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Used to reduce the health risk associated with food-borne pathogens such as Salmonella and to prolong shelf life

Irradiated Food Control according to European Norms

Food irradiation is used to reduce the health risk associated with food-borne pathogens such as Salmonella and to prolong shelf life (sprout inhibition, delay of ripening). In fact, ionizing radiation inhibits the division of microorganisms and creates so-called radiolytic products as well as free radicals. In a dry environment these radicals are relatively stable.
 
For example, irradiated poultry bones or dried spices may contain a substantial amount of stable radicals which can be easily detected by EPR spectroscopy (EPR = electron paramagnetic resonance, also known as ESR). Extensive consultations and round-robin tests were conducted during the 1990s in order to set European-wide standards for sample preparation, measurement protocol and unequivocal identification of irradiated food via EPR.Currently three EU norms exist, defining food irradiation control via EPR spectroscopy.

With standard research EPR spectrometers such as Bruker’s EMX and ELEXSYS series, food irradiation control can be conducted with superior sensitivity. These experiments require experienced technicians or scientists to operate these complex spectrometers with their full array of technical capabilities.

However, for food irradiation control by EPR to become a safe, reliable and accepted method, a dedicated bench-top EPR system is needed which is easy to set up and operate and which features purpose-designed protocols and applications as well as reliable calibration and self-validation as an integral part of the package. For this purpose Bruker’s e-scan™ Food Analyzer is the product of choice and represents the successor to the successful EMS104 table-top EPR analyzer with which many of the round-robin tests were conducted.

  • EN 1786:1996
    Foodstuffs – Detection of irradiated food containing bone by ESR spectroscopy
  • EN 1787:2000
    Foodstuffs – Detection of irradiated food containing cellulose by ESR spectroscopy
  • EN 13708:2001
    Foodstuffs – Detection of irradiated food containing crystalline sugar by ESR spectroscopy
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