Decontamination Efficiency of Slightly Acidic Electrolyzed Water on Fresh-Cut Cucumbers

Zhuqing Liu 1 , Yu Dong 2  and Wenshan Jiang 3
  • 1 China Agricultural University
  • 2 China Agricultural University
  • 3 China Agricultural University

The efficacy of slightly acidic electrolyzed water (SAEW, 20 mg/l of available chlorine) and sodium hypochlorite solution (NaClO, 120 mg/l of available chlorine) used as potential sanitizers for fresh-cut cucumbers was evaluated. SAEW with a near-neutral pH value (5.0 to 6.5) and lower available chlorine concentration (ACC) had an equivalent or higher efficiency to reduce microbial counts on the cucumbers compared to NaClO solution. A 5-minute treatment of SAEW and NaClO solution significantly reduced the indigenous aerobic bacteria on cucumbers by 1.62 and 1.51 log10 CFU/g, and molds and yeasts by 1.35 and 1.12 log10 CFU/g, respectively (P < 0.05). The reduction of microbial counts on cucumbers by tap water was markedly less than that by SAEW and NaClO solution (P < 0.05). Results indicate that SAEW provides an alternative technique for sanitization of fresh-cut vegetables with environmentally friendly broad spectrum microbial decontamination.

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IJFE is devoted to engineering disciplines related to processing foods. The areas of interest include heat, mass transfer and fluid flow in food processing; food microstructure development and characterization; application of artificial intelligence in food engineering research and in industry; food biotechnology; and mathematical modeling and software development for food processing purposes.