Purasal's Opti.Form powder product is a formulation of sodium salt from natural L(+)-lactic acid and sodium diacetate, and is primarily used in the meat and poultry industry for controlling listeria monocytogenes.
Last year the company introduced Purasal Powder S, sodium lactate powder. The company says that the worldwide demand for a sodium lactate/diacetate in a powder version resulted in the development of Purasal Powder Opti.Form.
Both products, says the company, can be used in fresh meat and cooked and emulsified products. The ingredient has also been especially developed for use in spice blends.
As of January 2006, all food businesses must be in compliance with the new microbiological regulations. These lay down the microbiological criteria for certain microorganisms such as Listeria monocytogenes - in ready-to-eat (RTE) foods.
Although infections caused by Listeria are not as common as for salmonella, they can cause anything from diarrhoea to blood poisoning or meningitis, just as the bacterium can lead to miscarriages or cause disease in foetuses and newborns.
Cooking kills most of the L. monocytogenes cells that can grow at refrigeration temperature, but ready-to-eat products, such as fermented sausages, and smoked fish, are not always cooked by consumers before consumption.
And under the new legislation, which aims to harmonise and modernise microbiological criteria, food operators have primary responsibility for ensuring that the criteria are met. Standards have been set for certain bacteria, and other pathogens may be added in the future, following evaluations by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA).
As a result, many European food companies have undertaken extensive measures to ensure that all hygiene criteria are met throughout the production process and that food safety criteria are met throughout the shelf life of the product. It is here that Purac believes it can help.
Like Purasal Opti.Form in its liquid form, the company says that the powder product can also be used to extend shelf life and to enhance flavour. Purac claims that the ingredient can also protect the colour of the meat and poultry products.
The powder is produced in Spain. Production is carried out in accordance with HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point) and GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices) principles.