The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and US Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced on December 30 the approval of SALMONELEX as a "GRAS" (Generally Recognized as Safe) food processing aid against Salmonella.
The new product consists of natural phages against Salmonella and is produced by Micreos of The Netherlands. The company confirms that industrial scale projects with US poultry processors will start in January 2014.
According to a report published in December by USDA's Food Safety & Inspection Services (FSIS), Salmonella contributes most to the FSIS's "All-Illness" performance measure and Salmonella illness estimates have continued at a steady high or slightly increased rate, despite FSIS interventions.
According to Micreos' CEO Mark Offerhaus: "Now that the FDA and USDA have given the green light, we can offer food processors a new and natural solution against Salmonella, including antibiotic resistant strains. SALMONELEX is seen as a very elegant solution as it targets only Salmonella and has no other effect on the treated food product, neither in taste, nor texture. Following the successful launch of LISTEX against Listeria, we are now further expanding the 'green' arsenal of weapons against foodborne pathogens. Given the prevalence of Salmonella in raw poultry, we expect poultry processors to be the first and largest users of SALMONELEX."
According to Dirk de Meester, business development manager for Micreos: "Research has shown that SALMONELEX does not dissipate in the presence of protein. Thus, the product enables processors to reduce the use of chemicals and reach Salmonella in places where antimicrobial chemicals are ineffective, for example in follicles which close when exposed to cold water in a chiller."