Produce - Postharvest
Listeria monocytogenes in Packinghouses
There have been several recent recalls after isolation of Listeria monocytogenes in apples, avocado, cantaloupe and stone fruit. Here are some publications that address the issue:
Guidelines for Controlling Listeria monocytogenes in Packing Operations (UC Pub PDF 98 KB). Published in 2000, this document provides tips on controlling the foodborne pathogen Listeria monocytogenes in fruit and vegetable packinghouses.
A newer publication was released by United Fresh in 2013. Guidance on Environmental Monitoring and Control of Listeria for the Fresh Produce Industry. This publication is free to download but you must fill out an order form at the United Fresh Website. Scroll down here: http://www2.unitedfresh.org/forms/store/ProductFormPublic/
- Although the focus is not on produce, information on L. monocytogenes for consumers can be found here: http://www.foodsafety.gov/poisoning/causes/bacteriaviruses/listeria/
Commodity-Specific Food Safety Resources
- Outbreaks of Foodborne Illness Associated with Common Berries, 1983 through May 2013 (University of Florida)
- Survival of Foodborne Pathogens on Berries (University of Florida)
- Fresh-Cut: FDA Guidance for Industry: Guide to Minimize Microbial Food Safety Hazards of Fresh-cut Fruits and Vegetables - Feb. 2008
- Juices: Outbreaks of Foodborne Disease Associated with Fruit and Vegetable Juices, 1922–2010 (University of Florida)
- Tomatoes: Growth, Reduction, and Survival of Bacteria on Tomatoes (University of Florida)
- Melons: Growth, Reduction, and Survival of Bacteria on Melon Types (University of Florida)
The mission of the Postharvest Technology Center is: Reduce postharvest losses and improve the quality, safety and marketability of fresh horticultural products.
UC Postharvest Handling
A selection of publications focusing on postharvest control of microbial decay and spoilage. The emphasis of these publications is on disinfection of edible horticultural crops and guidelines for controlling Listeria monocytogenes.
- Guidelines for Controlling Listeria monocytogenes in Small- to Medium-Scale Packing and Fresh-Cut Operations (UC Pub PDF 98k)
The goal of this publication is to offer guidelines for monitoring and minimizing the presence of Listeria monocytogenes in an agricultural packing operation and minimizing the possibility of its presence in the final food product, whether sold as a raw agricultural product or uncooked minimally processed vegetable.
- Oxidation-Reduction Potential (ORP) for Water Disinfection Monitoring, Control, and Documentation (UC Pub PDF 168k)
- Ozone Applications for Postharvest Disinfection of Edible Horticultural Crops (UC Pub PDF 177k)
The basic properties of ozone and its use in produce disinfection are discussed in this publication.
- Postharvest Chlorination: Basic Properties and Key Points for Effective Disinfection (UC Pub PDF 76k)
- Postharvest Handling for Organic Crops (UC Pub PDF 100k)