Food Safety Consortium researchers at the University of Arkansas' Division of Agriculture found that select organic acids, plant extracts and irradiation combine to make a formidable force against pathogenic bacteria on chicken breast meat, according to an article from ScienceDaily .
The researchers reduced E. coli O157:H7, Listeria monocytogenes and Salmonella typhimurium in the meat by infusing combinations of organic acids – acetic, citric, lactic, malic and tartaric – into the meat.
The use of green tea and grape seed extracts in combination with irradiation and the organic acids yielded the best results, significantly decreasing all the pathogens.
There were no significant effects on the chicken's color and texture due to the irradiation, said Navam Hettiarachchy, a UA food science professor who supervised the project.
"We want to determine the least amount of plant extracts that we can use and the least amount of irradiation dosage to get the best inhibitory effect," Hettiarachchy said.