Keeping Apples Safe

Keeping Apples Safe

Keeping Apples Safe. I'm Greg Martin with today's Fruit Grower Report.

Diane Wetherington, CEO for iFoodDecisionSciences in Seattle recently spoke to fruit growers about research they have done on the safety of apples from the orchard to the consumer and one issue kept coming up.

WETHERINGTON: From the industry data, from the information in the databases and the scientific data we focused the risk assessment that we conducted on E. coli. We identified E. coli as a hazard or concern. E. coli O157. Then we moved into this exposure assessment which is looking at the prevalence and the concentration on the apple and the looking at the consumption of that particular apple. This takes into account not only servings that a consumer eats, the type of consumer, how much the consumer weighs, how frequently they eat the apple but it also looks at the starting level of of concentration on the apple and what happens over time to that particular pathogen.

Wetherington wrapped it up with some suggestions.

WETHERINGTON: There are a number of factors that the industry can use and lower the risk levels, things like limiting the evaporative cooling volume that's being applied, looking at controlling microbial levels for cooling water, increasing the time interval between the cooling at the harvest and making sure that when you are washing the fruit that you are washing it with adequate detergent levels.

That's today's Fruit Grower Report. I'm Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network of the West.

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