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Inactivation of Clostridium sporogenes in Clover Honey by Pulsed UV-light Treatment

Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan

Citation:  Paper number  037017,  2003 ASAE Annual Meeting . (doi: 10.13031/2013.14232) @2003
Authors:   Sara L. Hillegas, Ali Demirci
Keywords:   Clover honey, Clostridium sporogenes, inactivation, decontamination, pulsed U.V.

Honey has naturally low levels of microorganisms due to its low water content and high concentration of sugars. However, it has been known to contain the spores of yeast, mold, and bacteria resulting in growth and spoilage of the product. Clostridium botulinum, is associated with honey and is known to cause a disease called botulism. Heat pasteurization, pressure treatment, and irradiation have all been studied as methods of killing the spores, but have been found lacking. Pulsed Ultraviolet (UV)-Light Sterilization is a novel processing method used for microbial inactivation. For the experimentation, spores of C. sporogenes were prepared from cooked meat medium cultures grown in an anaerobic jar for 7 days at 37oC. Honey was inoculated with 0.1 ml of C. sporogenes spore suspension per 20 g honey, and mixed well. Pulsed light was applied to the inoculated honey using the SteriPulse XL 3000 Pulsed Light Sterilization System provided by NASA Commercial Food Technology Center. The following parameters were analyzed: 1) the number of pulses 2) the distance between the food product and lamp 3) depth of honey. Treated and untreated (control) honey was analyzed for C. sporogenes.

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