With growing consumer demand for ready-to-eat (RTE) foods that are wholesome and require less handling and preparation, the production of RTE foods has increased and their variety has expanded considerably, spanning from bagged spinach to pre-packaged school lunches. But since RTE foods are normally consumed directly without cooking -- a step that kills pathogenic microorganisms that may be present in the food products -- concerns exist with regard to their safety. Several severe and high-profile outbreaks of food-borne illness linked to the consumption of RTE foods have prompted the USDA and FDA to issue stringent rules and regulations governing the manufacturing of RTE foods. Ready-to-Eat Foods: Microbial Concerns and Control Measures comprehensively reviews individual common RTE food and their specific safety-related aspects. This text explores the extensive research conducted by the food industry, academia, and research institutes that examines the potential health risk of contaminated RTE foods, investigates the growth behavior of common contaminating foodborne pathogens, and develops intervention technologies and control measures.
The book supplies an overview of food safety of RTE foods and various categories into which they fall. It also addresses the microorganisms of concern, the effect of processing on the survival of pathogenic and spoilage microorganisms, food safety, practical control measures, and intervention strategies. Ready-to-Eat Foods: Microbial Concerns and Control Measures is a critical reference for scientists and professionals working on the forefront of food safety and RTE food manufacturing.
Dr. Cheng-An (Andy) Hwang is a research food technologist at the Eastern Regional Research Center, Agricultural Research Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture, where he conducted research studying the survival, growth, and inactivation of common foodborne pathogens, such as Listeria monocytogenes, Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Salmonella, in formulated food products. Dr. Hwang has a PhD degree in Food Science and Technology and has worked in the areas of product development, microbiology, and food safety for more than 15 years. Dr. Lihan Huang received his PhD degree from Oregon State University in 1997 and has been serving as a Research Food Technologist at USDA Agricultural Research Service since 2000. His research focuses on the microbial safety of ready-to-eat meats, thermal processing, process engineering and instrumentation, and mathematical modeling/computer simulation of food safety engineering processes.