Antimicrobial processing aids given study backing

By Joe Whitworth

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Bacteria

Birko Beefxide and Porkxide processing aids backed by study
Two pathogen-reducing technologies from Birko have received independent backing from an independent US university study, which the developers claim “gives users an increased level of trust in our products.”  

Beefxide and Porkxide are antimicrobial processing aids that can be sprayed onto beef carcasses.

The testing at Angelo State University Meat Laboratory during February and March this year treated beef and pork carcasses with either Beefxide or Porkxide, or lactic acid.

Birko said the study was one of the first on pork with initial focus on beef and poultry.

The data showed Beefxide and Porkxide were effective as antimicrobial interventions for reducing microbial numbers on intact beef and pork carcasses.

It found that both Porkxide and lactic acid solutions were effective as an antimicrobial intervention for reducing microbial numbers on intact pork carcasses.

“Similarly both Beefxide and Lactic Acid solutions were effective as an antimicrobial intervention for reducing microbial numbers on intact beef carcasses​.

Beefxide showed a 3.1 log reduction in Aerobic Plate Count (APC) while coliforms and generic E.coli were reduced by 2.2 and 1.5 logs respectivley​,” said the study.

However, the university recommended further testing to confirm treatment effect of the products.

Independent support

Dr. Elis Owens, Ph.D., a chemist and microbiologist for Birko told the validation adds to the body of evidence to support its use.

It is another piece of evidence to support pathogen reduction technology on E.coli 0157:H7 and salmonella.

“The findings support our claims and give users an increased level of trust in our product.

​[They] can be applied to cuts and trimmings and carcasses to kill pathogens on the surface of the meat​.”

Beefxide received approval in May 2011 from the USDA-FSIS for use as an antimicrobial processing aid on beef carcasses, primals, cuts and trim and Porkxide was approved for use on pork products.

Dr. Owens said that the products killed E.coli 0157:H7 and salmonella and was effective on Shiga toxin- producing E.coli (STEC).

The study was the first on pork, we had initially focused on beef and poultry. The pork industry had been lagging behind beef and poultry.”

Patented mixture

The antimicrobials are a patented proprietary blended mixture of citric and lactic acid.

Dr. Owens added the Beefxide was also niche in that it was suitable for natural and organic products.

A segment of the public is more aware but it’s also the regulations by government and the desire of retailers and the beef producers to build in additional intervention methods to avoid lawsuits.

“Lactic acid has been used for 15 years and Beefxide is a replacement to offer greater salmonella and E.coli detection at a reduced cost and chemical concentration.

“Processors have increased their level of food safety and continue to use need more cost effective methods than they are using right now,” ​he said.

“We have thoughts of what is going to come next with more effective antimicrobials and other things to help beef producers control their costs​.”

Related topics Food safety & quality

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