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Chloroxyanion Residues in Cantaloupe and Tomatoes after Chlorine Dioxide Gas Sanitation

D. J. Smith, W. Ernst, G. R. Herges
Journal of agricultural and food chemistry 2015 v.63 no.43 pp. 9640-9649
cantaloupes, chemical residues, chlorine, chlorine dioxide, containers, food pathogens, food sanitation, fruit peels, fruits, maximum residue limits, perchlorates, tomatoes
Chlorine dioxide gas is effective at cleansing fruits and vegetables of bacterial pathogens and(or) rot organisms, but little data are available on chemical residues remaining subsequent to chlorine gas treatment. Therefore, studies were conducted to quantify chlorate and perchlorate residues after tomato and cantaloupe treatment with chlorine dioxide gas. Treatments delivered 50 mg of chlorine dioxide gas per kg of tomato (2-h treatment) and 100 mg of gas per kg of cantaloupe (6-h treatment) in sealed, darkened containers. Chlorate residues in tomato and cantaloupe edible flesh homogenates were less than the LC−MS/MS limit of quantitation (60 and 30 ng/g respectively), but were 1319 ± 247 ng/g in rind + edible flesh of cantaloupe. Perchlorate residues in all fractions of chlorine dioxide-treated tomatoes and cantaloupe were not different (P > 0.05) than perchlorate residues in similar fractions of untreated tomatoes and cantaloupe. Data from this study suggest that chlorine dioxide sanitation of edible vegetables and melons can be conducted without the formation of unwanted residues in edible fractions.