SureBeam, a leading provider of food hygiene technology in the US, has been awarded a US patent on an in-line processing system that is said to form food products, such as ground beef, into optimal configurations for irradiation processing.
This company said that the system is designed to achieve higher efficiencies in processing by configuring products to take advantage of the electron beam technology's strengths while also providing flexibility for product packaging. This patent adds to the technological advancements made with SureBeam's end-of-line systems and service centres.
"This new system is a technological jump in providing our customers with product processing optimisation," said John Arme, SureBeam's chairman and CEO. "Customers will also benefit from a reduction in capital cost since the new system is designed to be smaller while being able to process more food product in less time."
The company claims that the system is unique in that it will allow food products to be processed in a thicknesses that allows for the most efficient throughput for an electron-beam system. Food products using the current electron beam system may require packaging changes to accommodate the process, the company added. However, the company also said that since the new in-line system irradiates the food product prior to final packaging, it will significantly minimise changes to current packaging configurations and the cost associated with it.
Savings in labour costs are also said to be realised, since case handling necessary with the current system will no longer be needed with the in-line system. As a result of this new system, SureBeam claims it will be able to broaden its market opportunity - into such areas as bulk product or bulk ingredient processing commonly used with foodservice companies - using the electron-beam technology.
SureBeam Corporation's revolutionary x-ray and electron beam technology is a process that uses ordinary electricity to safely eliminate the threat of dangerous bacteria - such as E.coli, Listeria, and Salmonella - from food products, as well as being used an effective disinfestation treatment to destroy harmful pests.
Currently the use of such technology in Europe is largely outlawed, with dried herbs and spices being the only food category that the EU allows for. However, the industry is continuing to push for greater acceptance there, with many European scientists and food technologists lending there support to its application for the safety of meat.
SureBeam processed ground beef is currently sold in retail supermarkets across the United States, in addition to the nation-wide availability by home delivery, direct mail and food service.
Headquartered in San Diego, California, SureBeam is a leading provider of electron beam food safety systems and services for the food industry. Its technology is said to significantly improve food quality, extends product freshness, and provides disinfestation that helps to protect the environment.