Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Essential Oils From Common Spices Are Possible Allies In Food Safety

Date:
September 9, 2009
Source:
Institute of Food Technologists
Summary:
Oregano, allspice and garlic essential oils (EOs) can be effective, natural barriers against E. coli, Salmonella and Listeria. A new study revealed that oregano oil was found to be the most effective antimicrobial, followed by allspice and garlic.

Oregano, allspice and garlic essential oils (EOs) can be effective, natural barriers against E. coli, Salmonella and Listeria, according to a study in the Journal of Food Science, published by the Institute of Food Technologists. The new study from government researchers revealed that oregano oil was found to be the most effective antimicrobial, followed by allspice and garlic.

Researchers at Processed Foods Research and Produce Safety and Microbiology units of Western Regional Research Center from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) investigated the effectiveness of the oils by incorporating them in thin, tomato-based antimicrobial coatings known as edible films. In addition to its flavor properties, tomatoes are reported to possess numerous beneficial nutritional and bioactive components that may benefit human health. Edible tomato films containing antimicrobials may protect food against contamination by pathogenic microorganisms.

Testing was done by laying the films on top of the bacteria and also by exposing the bacteria to the vapors arising from the film. According to researchers:

  • Oregano oil consistently inhibited the growth of all three bacteria.
  • Garlic oil was not effective against E. coli or Salmonella, but was effective against Listeria.
  • Oregano and allspice oils were effective against E coli and Salmonella. Vapor tests of oregano and allspice oils indicated that these two oils diffuse more efficiently through the air than through direct contact with the bacteria.
  • Listeria was less resistant to EO vapors while E. coli was more resistant.

“Incorporating essential oils into edible films provides a new way to improve the safety and shelf life of foods, which will provide multiple benefits to consumers,” says lead researcher W. X. Du.

Edible films for fruits and vegetables can serve as carriers for food additives including plant-derived, safe antimicrobials. The increased interest in antimicrobial films is the result of increased consumption of contaminated fresh-cut produce.

In a related study from the same USDA research group, it was found that cinnamon, allspice and clove might have a new use in the kitchen. Essential oils (EOs) from these plants could be used to protect food from bacteria according to a study in the Journal of Food Science. They evaluated the physical and antimicrobial properties of allspice, cinnamon and clove bud oils in edible films of apple puree after 24 and 48 hours. Edible films and coatings on food products can serve as carriers for a wide range of beneficial food additives, including antimicrobials. The oils were incorporated into edible apple puree film at ranges of 0 to 3 percent. Researchers found:

The antimicrobial activity of cinnamon oil was significantly greater than allspice and clove bud oils against E. coli, Salmonella and Listeria.

  • Edible films containing 3 percent or less of cinnamon oil were found to be effective against the three pathogens.
  • Salmonella showed the least resistance to the EOs, while Escherichia coli showed the most.
  • Low concentrations (1 percent and 1.5 percent) of allspice and clove bud oils suppressed the growth of Listeria.

“The results show that apple-based films with allspice, cinnamon or clove bud oils were effective against the three bacteria. The essential oils have the potential to provide multiple benefits to consumers,” says lead researcher R. J. Avena-Bustillos.

This research was supported by USDA-CSREES, NRI grant #2006-01321.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Institute of Food Technologists. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Institute of Food Technologists. "Essential Oils From Common Spices Are Possible Allies In Food Safety." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 9 September 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090908103626.htm>.
Institute of Food Technologists. (2009, September 9). Essential Oils From Common Spices Are Possible Allies In Food Safety. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090908103626.htm
Institute of Food Technologists. "Essential Oils From Common Spices Are Possible Allies In Food Safety." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/09/090908103626.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How Nigeria Beat Its Ebola Outbreak

How Nigeria Beat Its Ebola Outbreak

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) The World Health Organization has declared Nigeria free of Ebola. Health experts credit a bit of luck and the government's initial response. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Another Study Suggests Viagra Is Good For The Heart

Another Study Suggests Viagra Is Good For The Heart

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) An ingredient in erectile-dysfunction medications such as Viagra could improve heart function. Perhaps not surprising, given Viagra's history. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Worries End for Dozens on U.S. Watch Lists

Ebola Worries End for Dozens on U.S. Watch Lists

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 20, 2014) Forty-three people who had contact with Thomas Eric Duncan, the first person diagnosed with Ebola in the U.S., were cleared overnight of twice-daily monitoring after 21 days of showing no symptoms. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Calls for New Ebola Safety Guidelines

CDC Calls for New Ebola Safety Guidelines

AP (Oct. 20, 2014) Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Dr. Tom Frieden laid out new guidelines for health care workers when dealing with the deadly Ebola virus including new precautions when taking off personal protective equipment. (Oct. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins