Course:FNH200/Lessons/Lesson 10/Page 10.8

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10.8 Potential Applications of Radiant Energy

The following examples illustrate various potential applications of ionizing energy in food preservation:

  • Much of the food consumed by American and Russian astronauts has been preserved with ionizing energy.
  • Irradiation has proven effectiveness in the elimination of Salmonella from cut-up, packaged chicken. The chicken has received good consumer acceptance in test market trials in the United States.
  • Use of low dose radiation was approved in the United States, in December 1997, for general use in irradiation of ground beef to eliminate the bacteria (Escherichia coli O157:H7) that cause "hamburger disease".
  • A similar application is under consideration by Health Canada. There was a Public Information Session held on the UBC campus on January 16, 2003, in which information was provided on proposed amendments to allow irradiation of ground beef, poultry, shrimp and prawns, and mangoes. On June 18th, 2016 Health Canada proposed regulatory amendment to include fresh and frozen raw ground beef to the list of approved food for irradiation. UPDATE: Feb 2017, Health Canada has approved irradiation of fresh and raw ground beef. Please see table for complete up to date list of approved foods for irradiation.