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Food Microbiology

OPERATIONAL RESEARCH VISION

The Committee on Food Microbiology is committed to proactively improving the understanding and control of microbial food safety hazards to enable scientifically informed decision making.  This is achieved through supporting sound science, sponsoring break-through research and fostering collaboration amongst academia, government, and industry
 
ANNOUNCEMENTS 

New publication: Cleaning and Sanitation of Salmonella-Contaminated Peanut Butter Processing Equipment

IAFP 2014
The committee sponsored 3 scientific sessions at IAFP 2014. Video of theses sessions can be found here.

Scientific Sessions:  

  • The Rise of the Genomes – How Whole Genome Sequencing Will Transform Food Safety
  • Parasites in the Food Supply Chain:  Emergence or Re-Emergence?
  • Current Perspectives in Food Safety Roundtable

More details about theses sessions at IAFP 2014 can be found here.  Additionally, four posters, on work sponsored by the committee, were also presented.

The Committee presented work at the American Spice Trade Association Annual Meeting, 29 April 2014. The presentation which was presented during this session can be found here.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

 

Research Grants on Pathogen Reduction in Spices
The ILSI North America Technical Committee on Food Microbiology is pleased to announce the recipients of research grants on pathogen reduction in spices: Dr. Monica Ponder of Virginia Tech and Dr. Gary Acuff of Texas A & M University.  The Technical Committee on Food Microbiology is driving the research to establish standardized inoculation protocols and to validate surrogate organisms for industrial-scale spice treatments.  The research endeavor is recently recognized in an article Spicy, Flavorful, and Safe in the August 2013 issue of Food Technology Magazine.​​

 

Symposia from the 2013 International Association for Food Protection Annual Meeting​
The ILSI North America Technical Committee on Food Microbiology supported three sessions at the 2013 IAFP Annual Meeting held at Charlotte, North Carolina from July 28 to July 31 2013, including the "Culture Independent Diagnostics” symposium, the “What is Dry Sanitation? What is Dry Cleaning?” symposium, and a roundtable on “Current Controversies in Food Safety”. Presentations at the sessions are now available on our website​.

CURRENT RESEARCH

In advance of setting priorities for each new research cycle, the committee and its scientific advisors hold a research roundtable with representatives of the following federal and international agencies: the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC); the US Food and Drug Administration/Center for Food Safety and Nutrition (FDA/CFSAN); the US Food and Drug Administration/Office of Food and Veterinary Medicine and the Agricultural Research Service (ARS), Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) of the USDA, European Food Safety Authority and Health Canada. The objective of these roundtable discussions is to identify emerging food microbiology research needs considered critical to public health.

 

A research roundtable was held on 9 April, 2013.  

RESEARCH GRANT CYCLES 

Research Grant Cycle 2013-2015
The ILSI North America Technical Committee on Food Microbiology is pleased to announce the recipients of research grants on pathogen reduction in spices:
 
Monica Ponder, PhD, Virginia Tech
“Protocol and Surrogate Validation for the Inactivation of Salmonella on Spices”
 
Gary Acuff, PhD, Texas A & M University
“Correlation of Surrogate Bacteria and Salmonellae for Validation of Spice/Herb Pathogen Reduction Processes”

 

The spices and seasoning category is among the top three categories in Reportable Food Registry submissions for Salmonella in human foods over the past two years. In addition, most spices consumed in the US are imported from foreign suppliers that often lack the regulations or expertise to ensure the reduction of Salmonella to safe levels.

The Technical Committee on Food Microbiology is therefore driving the research to establish standardized inoculation protocols and to validate surrogate organisms for industrial-scale spice treatments. The American Spice Trade Association (ASTA) is providing an unrestricted grant to ILSI North America to help support the funding of the research projects.

The research endeavor by the Technical Committee on Food Microbiology is recently recognized in an article on the August 2013 issue of Food Technology Magazine.

Current Grant Cycle 2012-2014
Trevor Suslow, PhD, University of California, Davis 
“On Farm Evaluation of the Prevalence of Human Enteric Bacterial Pathogens during the Production of Melons in California and Arizona”
 
Sanghyup Jeong, PhD, Michigan State University
“Using high-frequency nano-amplitude mechanical vibration for preventing and reducing Salmonella attachment on dry surfaces”
 
 Stephen Grove, PhD, Institute for Food Safety and Health at Illinois Institute of Technology
“Best practices for cleaning and sanitizing nut butter processing equipment”
 

PUBLICATIONS

 

RESOURCES FOR FOOD MICROBIOLOG​Y INVESTIGATORS

The ILSI North America Reference Strain Collection: Expansion to Salmonella Is​olates
Established in 2001 for Listeria monocytogenes isolates and housed at Cornell University, the ILSI North America Reference Strain Collection was expanded in 2006 to include the strain set and subtyping data that emerged from the committee’s Enterobacter (now Cronobacter) sakazakii. In 2008, the strain collection was expanded again to include the strains set of Salmonella resulting from the Salmonella low-moisture projects. Isolates from the collection are distributed for a minimal charge to researchers around the world. This unique resource provides investigators with a standard set of isolates that improves comparison of study data. The Committee on Food Microbiology continues to support the expansion of the strain collection to include Salmonella isolates. To access information on reference strain collections, click here​.

 

To access links to resulting publications generated by funding from the Committee on Food Microbiology prior to 2008, click here.


COMMITTEE MEMBERS

Cargill, Incorporated
The Coca-Cola Company
ConAgra Foods, Inc.
General Mills, Inc.
Hillshire Brands
Kellogg Co.
Kraft Foods Group, Inc.
Mars, Incorporated
Mondelēz International
Nestlé USA
PepsiCo, Inc.

 
SCIENTIFIC ADVISORS
Marguerite Neill, MD
Brown University
Kendra Nightingale, PhD
Texas Tech University

  

GOVERNMENT LIAISONS
Peter Gerner-Smidt, MD, PhD
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
 Mickey Parish, PhD
Office of Food Safety 
Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition

  

STAFF CONTACT

Alison Kretser, MS, RD
Director, Science Programs
ILSI North America
1156 15th Street, NW 
Suite 200
Washington, DC 20005
Tel: 202.659.0074
Fax: 202.659.3859
akretser@ilsi.org

 
Download the Committee on Food Microbiology fact sheet here​.