The World Health Organization (WHO) has reported that each year up to 600 million people worldwide suffer from infections originating from contaminated food. WHO estimates that diseases caused by infected foods lead to approximately 400,000 >> deaths every year (1). Among the causes for contaminated food diseases is Salmonella, a bacterial infection which easily spreads through food and can cause severe symptoms (2).
Among the foods that are easily contaminated with different Salmonella species are seeds, and specifically sesame. Different sesame products have been found with high rates of Salmonella infections, including sesame oil (3), tahini (4), halvah (5) and more. Additionally, recent reports from Europe have announced contaminated sesame seed recalls due to pesticide residue, used in order to stop the growth of Salmonella (6).
Eshet Eilon, in collaboration with the Israel Ministry of Agriculture and the Agricultural Engineering Center has developed a series of patented, 100% green, steam machines which allow for dry-steam treatments for either fresh or processed food. The use of a unified dry heat stream applied on either fresh or processed food has strong antimicrobial effects, without damaging the product. Experiments on both dry and wet sesame seeds have shown a significant drop in infection rates from 12.8% to 2.2%. The treatment is applied with the use of a machine with a spiral shape, which exposes the sesame to steam at very high speed.
Contact us for more information on Eshet Eilon’s dry-steam disinfection systems, for a variety of products, including sesame seeds and their derivatives.