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Use of 1% Peroxyacetic Acid Sanitizer in an Air-Mixing Wash Basin to Remove Bacterial Pathogens from Seeds

Rajkowski, Kathleen T., Ashurst, Kean
Foodborne pathogens & disease 2009 v.6 no.9 pp. 1041
peroxides, sanitizers, peracetic acid, washing, food pathogens, bacteria, bacterial contamination, sinks, air, seeds, Salmonella, Escherichia coli O157:H7, alfalfa, sprouts (food), product evaluation, food contamination
To achieve the production of pathogen-free sprouts, there must be appropriate mixing of liquid sanitizer with the seeds to assure contact. Commercial treatments by irradiation or ozone gas of Salmonella spp. artificially inoculated seeds were compared, and these resulted in a 1 log reduction after all treatments. Use of peroxyacetic acid (1%) sanitizer on Salmonella spp. or Escherichia coli O157:H7 inoculated alfalfa seeds consistently resulted in a greater than 1 log reduction. In addition, during these studies debris was noted after the seeds were removed. Based on this observation, an air-mixing wash basin was developed for commercial use. Validation was done by commercial growers using 1% peroxyacetic acid sanitizer to wash seeds in the air-mixing basin, followed by sprouting the seeds. No positive or false-positive pathogen results were reported after the required testing of the sprout water (run-off during sprouting). Use of 1% peroxyacetic acid sanitizer in the air-mixing wash basin does provide the sprout grower an effective means of sanitizing sprout seeds.