Fruit and Vegetables

IAFP: FULL CONTACT SPORT

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The Kentucky Derby is not supposed to be a contact sport.

Fighting pathogens, molds and yeasts, however, is a very serious contact sport.  A game plan consisting of the right contact time, coverage and concentration can stop bacteria in their tracks. Our application engineers help design and oversee installations to optimize all three.

TriStrata’s ozone generators and support are designed to keep you in the game and on the job without interruption. Let’s meet at IAFP to discuss in more detail based on your facility and processes. Stop by booth #366 or schedule an appointment by contacting Dustin Cheatham at dcheatham@tristratagroup.com.

A powerful food safety intervention

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POWERFUL, SAFE AND SUSTAINABLE

Ozone is an effective antimicrobial agent, excellent on a broad spectrum of Germicidal activity. Ozone penetrates the cell surface and causes progressive oxidation of vital cellular components leading to cell lysis of microorganisms on food, surfaces and in the air. Bacteria cannot build up a resistance to ozone, making it an extremely effective long-term solution.

The graph above illustrates the superior oxidation potential of ozone compared to other food safety treatments.

Ozone has 2 times the oxidative strength and 200 times the sanitizing strength of chlorine, providing improved sanitation benefits at a fraction of the concentration.

Ozone is the triatomic oxygen molecule and quickly reverts back into oxygen leaving no harmful byproducts or residuals.

Ozone can be used on organic foods and for surface sanitation to maintain “Organic” or “Made with Organic Ingredients” labeling requirements.

For more information comparing ozone to other food sanitizers contact one of our application specialists by <clicking here>

FOOD RECALLs: Largest costs & recoveries

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Thirty-six members of the Association of Food, Beverage and Consumer Products Companies participated in a survey to assess the impact of product recalls in the food, beverage and consumer product sectors. The surveys & interviews were augmented by independent research, discussions with industry professionals, and subject matter resources from Ernst & Young and Covington & Burlington.

Key Survey Results included:

81% of respondents deem the financial risk from recalls as significant to catastrophic

58% have been affected by a product recall event in the last five years

77% experienced recalls that had a financial impact of less than $30 million

78% manage the risk by procuring insurance

The largest recall costs came from business interruption & product disposal

The highest recoveries came from insurance proceeds

The full report can be viewed by clicking <here>

TriStrata Group engineers, builds and implements ozone generators and application delivery systems designed to improve safety and quality performance for food processors, distributors and storage facilities. Connect with a specialist to add additional hurdles to your food safety program. <Click Here>

TriStrata names new Chief Operations Officer

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TriStrata Group has named Mohammad Shakeri its new Chief Operations Officer.

“Mohammad has been essential to leading new hardware and software innovations for our next generation of ozone systems and application improvements. In his newly expanded role he will have responsibility for all the operating aspects at TriStrata, including service, projects, installation and IT.” said Dr. Bromley Beadle, CEO of TriStrata Group.

Prior to joining TriStrata Group, Mohammad had a 20-year career at Microsoft, contributing in many roles including Director of Design for User Experience, Director of Continuous Improvement and Director of User Research. 

As a program manager and software engineer at Fluke, he provided leadership in UI and UX for many of their industrial electronic testing and measurement products.

Mohammad has an Electrical Engineering degree with a Minor in Computer Science from Central Washington University and has completed MBA courses at the University of Washington.

TriStrata is part of the Wheatsheaf Group, a UK based company that operates, invests in and helps to develop businesses in the food and agriculture sectors to provide resource efficiency for the future well-being of the planet and its people. 

FDA begins unannounced testing of frozen berries

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Federal officials have begun the unannounced testing of frozen berry samples as part of an effort to develop preventive controls against pathogens such as Hepatitis A and Norovirus. These two viruses caused outbreaks in recent years that sickened hundreds of people across the United States.

Ozone destroys many Viruses (including Hep A and Norovirus), Bacteria, Fungus and Mold spores by penetrating, collapsing, and destroying the cell wall of microorganisms.

Berries served by themselves or in a product, without a cooking kill step, are more dangerous in terms of food-borne pathogens than many other domestic and imported foods, according to the recent announcement from the Food and Drug Administration.

Results of the unannounced tests will be posted for public view on a quarterly basis. A final analysis is planned after the data is reviewed. 

“Strawberries, raspberries and blackberries are delicate and may become contaminated with bacteria or viruses if handled by an infected worker who does not use appropriate hand hygiene, or if exposed to contaminated agricultural water or a contaminated surface, like a harvesting tote. Freezing preserves berries but generally does not kill viruses, which can survive at low temperatures.”.

If tests from the sampling program confirm Hepatitis A or norovirus in a sample, the FDA will notify the firm of the findings and work with the business owners to take appropriate action to protect the public health.  The U.S. agency may also take actions such as placing companies on import alerts; oversee recalls; or issuing public warnings.

See full article at Food Safety News <click here>

Control Postharvest Berry decay

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Processing berries has many challenges. Mold, Listeria, and cross contamination are just a few. Fresh pack berries are even more challenging when you can’t wash them down. 

There are few options to overcome these challenges. But there is one solid solution.

Atmospheric ozone provides the only continuously effective and safe means of reducing mold & pathogens and controlling cross-contamination on fresh pack berries. 

Several TriStrata clients use our gaseous ozone generators in their pre-cool, storage coolers and IQF tunnels, as well as utilizing our aqueous applications for pathogen control on frozen berries and to reduce biofilm formation on belts and Listeria on floors. Ozone is not only powerful it’s approved organic, overcoming export issues you face with chlorine.

Contact us to see if we can help extend your product shelf life, increase processing uptime, and control your food safety risks. <click here>

TOP BENEFITS OF OZONE FOR FOOD SAFETY & QUALITY

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A BETTER WAY TO PROCESS AND STORE FOOD TO KEEP IT SAFER, OUR WORLD CLEANER AND EVERYONE HEALTHIER.

NATURALLY PROTECTS CONSUMER WELL-BEING

Ozone is one of nature’s most powerful oxidizers making it an effective multifunctional food safety intervention.

CONTROLS MICROBIOLOGICAL COUNTS

Ozone penetrates cell surface and causes progressive oxidation of vital cellular components leading to cell lysis of microorganisms on food, surfaces and in the air.

NO RESISTANCE

Bacteria cannot build up a resistance to ozone, making it an extremely effective long-term solution.

ENVIRONMENTALLY FRIENDLY

Ozone is the triatomic oxygen molecule and quickly reverts back into oxygen leaving no harmful byproducts or residuals.

APPROVED AS SAFE AND EFFECTIVE

Approved by the FDA, USDA, FSIS, EPA as well as others. It also meets OSHA guidelines for commercial use which means it’s safe for you and your employees.

MEETS ORGANIC LABEL REQUIREMENTS

Ozone can be used on organic foods and for surface sanitation to maintain “Organic” or “Made with Organic Ingredients” labeling requirements.

CONTINUOUS CLEANING

Ozone is an effective intervention tool for cleaning and sanitizing during processing; allowing you to run longer production shifts without sacrificing food quality or safety.

ROOM DISINFECTION

Ozone controls pathogens, molds, and yeasts as well as prevents cross contamination in RA and CA rooms that cannot be sprayed down regularly such as packing rooms, drying rooms, coolers, freezers etc.

INCREASES SHELF LIFE

Ozone reduces / eliminates food spoilage organisms and thus improves the shelf life of fresh food.

INTEGRATES WITH EXISTING IN-LINE PROCESSES

Aqueous and gaseous ozone systems can be incorporated into most existing in-line processes.

REDUCES CONVENTIONAL CHEMICAL COSTS

Approved for direct product contact, and for plant sanitation, Ozone does the same or better job compared to costly, potentially hazardous conventional chemicals.

NO STORAGE REQUIRED

Ozone is produced on demand so there are no dangerous substances to be stored or handled on the premises.

REDUCTION IN PLANT ODOR

Ozone controls plant odors to increase the quality of working conditions within your facility.

SAFE FOR WASTEWATER SYSTEMS

Ozonated water is safe for wastewater systems, helping with wastewater disinfection and odor control. It has the potential to reduce the need of alkalinity needed with PAA.

Ozone: USDA approved organic

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Ozone can be used as an ingredient in or on organic foods meeting the National Organic Program requirements per §205.605. It is also approved as a surface sanitizer on contact surfaces for organic foods.

This approval allows food processors, distributors and storage facilities to maintain “Organic” or “Made with Organic Ingredients” labeling requirements using ozone as a food safety and quality treatment. (Please note this does not apply to products with “100% Organic” labeling requirements.)

TriStrata ozone generators utilize oxygen molecules from the air (O2) and pass them through a corona field, splitting them into single atoms of oxygen (O1). These atoms combine with an O2 molecule to form a molecule of O3, ozone. It quickly turns back into oxygen, leaving no harmful byproducts or residuals. Making it environmentally friendly and safe for wastewater systems.

Refer to CFR 205.605 for details <Click here>

If you’d like to learn more about using ozone to improve food safety and quality on your organic products please e-mail us at sales@tristratagroup.com or <click here>

Dr. Peggy Cook leads TriStrata's Efficacy Research Center

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“Our mission is to validate and improve the efficacy of ozone applications in the food industry” stated Dr. Peggy Cook, Chief Scientific Officer, of the facility in Springdale, Arkansas.

Dr. Cook was Director of Tyson Food’s Food Safety and Research Laboratory, prior to joining Safe Foods Corporation as Executive Vice President, where she ran its research and development divisions, including MCA Laboratory Services, Engineering, and Information Technology Services.

She was a part of Cargill’s Food Safety and Regulatory Department and worked for the Institute of Environmental Health Laboratory and Consulting Group, Inc. She holds a Ph.D. in microbiology and is a Certified Food Scientist, as qualified by the Institute of Food Technologists. 

Dr. Cook is a two-term member of the National Advisory Committee for Microbiological Criteria for Foods (NACMCF) USDA/FSIS in Washington, DC. A committee that provides impartial, scientific advice, and/or peer reviews to federal food safety agencies for use in the development of an integrated national food safety systems approach.

To learn more about the science of ozone <click here>


Apples: Listeria reduction most effective in CA rooms

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New studies suggest the preponderance of Listeria reduction occurs during apple storage and that additional reduction during processing is limited by apple surface microstructures.

Two recent food safety research studies from the School of Food Science at Washington State University and the Washington State Tree Fruit Research Commission indicate that when used properly, ozone can safely disinfect your apples during storage significantly reducing the risk of entrapped Listeria cells in the microstructures of the fruit during processing and packing.

STUDY #1 – Ozone Gas + CA results in 5.0 Log CFU/apple reduction (GRAPH BELOW)

“Continuous application of low doses of gaseous ozone in CA storage facilitated L.innocua reduction and resulted in ≈5.0 Log CFU/apple reduction after 30-week storage. In addition, continuous low-dose ozone gas inhibited apple background flora without negative impact on fruit quality.”

5-Log Listeria Reduction Graph

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Click <here> for full study.
- School of Food Science at Washington State University and the Washington State Tree Fruit Research Commission 

STUDY #2 – Apple surfaces harbor Listeria contracted in the dump tank or flume

“Apple Surface morphology was found to be (an) important factor in attachment of L. innocua. Microstructures serve as harbor sites for bacteria attached by physical entrapment. Settled in hard to reach sites, bacteria are protected from cleaning operations and disinfection.”

Click <here> for full study.
- School of Food Science at Washington State University

If you’re interested in discussing your food safety program in greater detail, please contact Nick Lyon at: nlyon@tristratagroup.com or call 425-327-1378.

Government approvals of Ozone

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FDA — SECONDARY DIRECT FOOD ADDITIVES PERMITTED IN FOOD FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION (2004) 1 CFR 173.368

Since 2004, The FDA has deemed Ozone safe to use as an antimicrobial agent in the treatment, storage, and processing of foods, including meat and poultry.

 USDA — FSIS DIRECTIVE 7210.1

Since January 2000, the USDA/FSIS has officially accepted ozone as safe and suitable for use in the production of meat and poultry products. In accordance with current industry standards of good manufacturing practice.

FSIS — RESPONSE TO INTERPRETATION REQUEST (2001)

November 27, 2001, the American Meat Institute filed a letter with FSIS asking for interpretation on the scope of the FDA rule allowing the use of ozone as an antimicrobial agent. FSIS determined that, “the use of ozone on raw and ready-to-eat meat and poultry products just prior to packaging is acceptable”, and that there are “no labelling issues in regard to treated product”.

NOP — NATIONAL ORGANIC PROGRAM

Ozone can be used as an ingredient in or on organic foods and as surface sanitation on food contact surfaces in food processing, distribution, and retail centers and maintain an “Organic” or “Made with Organic Ingredients” label. (Please note this does not apply to products with “100% Organic” labeling requirements.). Refer to CFR 205.605 for details.

 OSHA — REGULATIONS FOR OZONE GAS

Ozone meets OHSA guidelines if ambient levels and exposure times are within limits listed below:

PEL (Permissible Exposure Limit): 8-hour Time Weighted Average 0.1 PPM Vol. 

STEL (Short Term Exposure Limit): 15 minutes 0.3 PPM Vol.

IDLH (Immediately Dangerous to Life and Health): 5 PPM Vol

USDA — APPROVAL AS A HARD SURFACE SANITIZER

The NSF White Book Listing replaces the terminated US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Listing of Proprietary Substances and Nonfood Compounds.

EPA — TRISTRATA GROUP IS REGISTERED AS A PESTICIDE-PRODUCING ESTABLISHMENT

The EPA regulates ozone as a pesticide. Thus, ozone equipment must be registered by the EPA under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). The private labeling company’s EPA Establishment No. is 071472-CA-001 for TriStrata Group.

Lower Your Environmental Listeria Positives

Effective control of environmental Listeria is achievable. 

The combination of low levels of ozone during production, coupled with elevated levels at nightly, weekly and/or monthly intervals is a very effective way to augment your current sanitation practices.  A study using a high concentration of ozone gas-based treatments for 30 minutes for decontamination of surfaces and rooms achieved a 3 log reduction of Listeria.

Efficacy Reports:

Atmospheric ozone for Listeria control on surfaces

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Full study can be viewed <here>

Environmental Room Disinfection:

Ozone room disinfection controls cross-contamination and defends against Listeria in high-risk rooms that cannot be cleaned & sanitized regularly. Atmospheric ozone is dispersed throughout rooms by fans or through ventilation systems.

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If you’d like more information on room disinfection you can click <here> or email us at sales@tristratagroup.com to discuss how we can help your operation effectiveness.

FORMER USDA UNDER SECRETARY for FOOD SAFETY JOINS TRISTRATA GROUP BOARD

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Elisabeth Hagen, M.D., the former food safety chief at the U.S. Department of Agriculture has become a member of the Board of Directors at TriStrata Group.

During her tenure at the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service, Dr. Hagen’s focus on preventing foodborne illness was the agency’s top priority.  Prior to her role as undersecretary she was the USDA ‘s Chief Medical Officer and Senior Executive in the Office of Public Health Science, where she played a vital role in developing and executing the agency’s scientific and public health agendas.

“As a physician and mother of two children, I know how important it is for families to feel confident that the food they put on their tables every night is safe and healthy” said Dr. Hagen, “I appreciate the potential of ozone to do just that in a way that reduces the environmental impact of the industry and the health risks to employees.”  

TriStrata is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Wheatsheaf Group.  For more information on Wheatsheaf <click here>

How much does a Food recall cost?

In 2018, US companies experienced 213 pathogen related recalls. What did that cost them? We did a bit of digging and here is what we found…Over half of all recalls cost more than $11 million.

We recently attended a food sanitation conference and someone in the audience asked the panel, “How much does a recall costs…or a range I might expect?” Surprising no one had an answer.

We thought this was an important question because it helps us all better understand the cost of waiting to long to address food safety concerns or not having enough effective interventions to successfully manage the risks.

The best source we discovered was published by GMA (The Association of Food, Beverage and Consumer Products Companies) and Ernst & Young. The full report can be viewed by clicking <here>

This study was published in 2011 so we have adjusted for inflation to 2019 US dollars.

48% of recalls cost less than $10 million

47% of recalls cost between $11 million to $110 million

5% of recalls cost more than $112 million

Graph: ESTIMATED FINANCIAL IMPACT AS A RESULT OF A RECALL Including sales loss, direct recall costs, etc

The implementation of additional food safety hurtles may have helped these companies reduce their risk and financial impact. We may be able to help, connect with us <here>

FACT or FICTION: All ozone providers are the same.

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All ozone providers are not the same.

The services and support provided vary greatly and the disparity can mean the difference between outcome success and failure.

Several things you should ask any ozone provider you are considering:

1. Do you have service techs in my area to maintain and service the ozone generating system?

TriStrata has the largest nationwide field service team to keep your ozone equipment maintained properly and repairs made quickly.

2. Does your company focus solely on the food Industry?

Successful implementation of ozone requires an in-depth knowledge of food safety, processing procedures, HACCP, and ozone’s capabilities. TriStrata focuses solely on the food industry.

3. Do you have a monitoring and data logging system? Does your customer service team monitor it for irregularities?

TriStrata provides remote monitoring & access, data logging, AND dedicated system analysts that actively work to rectify alarms remotely.

To learn more about TriStrata service and support click <here>

TriStrata Group would appreciate the opportunity to meet with you to discuss your food safety concerns, our capabilities and tailor a solution to fit your needs. 

FACT or FICTION: You can reduce antimicrobial usage with ozone.

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Consider ozone as an additional food safety hurdle in your food safety microbial intervention strategy for several reasons:

1.     Reduce antimicrobial usage.  Ozone can maintain and often reduce the incidence of microorganisms while decreasing the usage and costs of other microbial interventions. 

2.     Reduce safety risks.  Ozone will reduce the hazards associated with your team handling hazardous chemicals.

3.     Reduce complexity & footprint.  Ozone is generated on-site.  No need for additional orders, storage and waiting on delivery.

4.     Reduce your environmental impact.  Ozone starts and ends as oxygen.  We can help you achieve clean labeling and sustainability goals.

To learn more about adding ozone as a strategic intervention in please click here>>

Do your food safety interventions provide FSMA compliance reporting support?

TriStrata’s proprietary remote monitoring system proactively addresses irregularities, sends alerts and supports regulatory and third party compliance reporting.

To connect with an application specialists to determine how we can help address your food safety and compliance reporting needs email us at: sales@tristratagroup.com

Ozone improves the microbiological safety of food products

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HEALTH CANADA — In a response to approve the application of ozone directly onto food products, Health Canada, Bureau of Chemical Safety had no objection to the application of ozone in the following applications:

  1. Approval to apply ozone in aqueous solution on surface of poultry carcasses, parts, trim and organs (up to 10 ppm) and on surface of red meat carcasses, parts, trim and organs (up to 2.5 ppm)

  2. Approval to apply gaseous ozone to surface of poultry carcasses during air-dry chilling (up to 10 ppm) and on surface of poultry meat parts and deboned poultry meat (up to 20 ppm)

  3. Approval to apply ozone in aqueous solution (up to 3 ppm with contact time not to exceed 5 seconds, to surface of hot dogs and chicken drumsticks.

  4. Wash water containing up to 2.5 PPM ozone on fresh fish (whole, headed and/or gutted, minced, fillet), shellfish (crustaceans or molluscs) and fresh or blanched vegetables, for up to 30 sec. contact time.

  5. Wash water containing up to 3.5 PPM ozone on fresh fruits and potatoes for up to 30 sec. contact time.

  6. Wash water containing up to 2.5 PPM ozone on fresh leafy greens for up to 45 sec. contact time.

To discuss ozone food safety applications in Canada please call Alain Vezina at
(418) 929-9977 or connect here >

The Power of Ozone

TriStrata delivers on the power of ozone to keep your food safer, our world cleaner and everyone healthier.

Ozone can provide effective multifunctional food safety and quality interventions without the drawbacks of other alternatives. It leaves no harmful byproducts or residuals, and is safe for wastewater systems. Our ozone generators create O3 on site, reducing the need to store, use and dispose of harsh chemicals. Approved as safe and effective by the FDA, USDA, FSIS, EPA and others. And meets OSHA guidelines for commercial use, which means it's safe for you and your employees.

Connect with our specialists to put the power of Ozone to work for you.

reduce postharvest decay with proper Room and bin sanitation

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Dr. Achour Amiri, Plant Pathologist at WSU recently published an article about the importance of room and bin sanitation to reduce postharvest decay for apples and pears. His research concludes a 60-90% spore kill percentage on wooden bins and empty rooms using ozone gas/fog with a 2-48 hour exposure.

>Click here for the study

Our postharvest specialist, Nick Lyon, can do a free site evaluation to determine how to best address your room and bin sanitation needs. He can be reached at 425-327-1378 or nlyon@tristratagroup.com