CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Ecolab Inc. introduces Antimicrobial Fruit and Vegetable Treatment (AFVT) -- a breakthrough product to help reduce the risk of foodborne illness outbreaks related to ineffective produce washing in foodservice operations. AFVT is the industry’s first no-rinse produce wash to earn both Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) registration and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) clearance for pathogen reduction in the water for whole produce and on the surface of cut fruits and vegetables1.
“Our customers count on us to provide products that help deliver clean, safe and healthy environments everywhere it matters – and the food safety arena is particularly important,” said Kris Kielsa, vice president of marketing, Institutional Division, Ecolab. “Feedback from our foodservice customers indicated a need for a product that is not only effective, but easy to use in a busy commercial kitchen. AFVT is just one example of how Ecolab is uniquely positioned to respond to the needs of our customers by delivering innovative products that help improve food safety.”
A recent study by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed that lettuce and other leafy green vegetables are the largest source of foodborne illnesses in the U.S. “For a cost of less than a penny per plate, AFVT provides restaurant operators with an extra measure of protection against foodborne illness, helping to protect their customers and the reputation of their brand,” Kielsa added.
Kielsa went on to say that AFVT provides a substantial improvement over current produce-washing practices. “It enhances the appearance of produce, reduces bacteria that cause spoilage and leaves no smell or aftertaste. Ecolab's controlled dispensing system makes using the product as easy as turning on a tap.” He added that one sink-full can clean a day’s supply of fresh fruits and vegetables – up to 200 pounds – making it affordable, easy and efficient to use in a busy commercial kitchen.
AFVT is registered with the EPA2 indicating that it reduces 99.9 percent of E.coli, Listeria and Salmonella3 in wash water for raw agricultural commodities. The product also received FDA4 clearance confirming that the new fruit and vegetable wash reduces pathogens on the surface of cut (further processed) produce5.
“The CDC study also said that about 2.2 million people get sick annually from eating contaminated leafy vegetables. That represents about 23 percent of the 9.6 million cases of foodborne illness each year,” said Erin Mertz, principal microbiologist at Ecolab. “We believe the patent-pending chemistry of our AFVT will help lower the number of these cases by both reducing pathogens on the surface of produce and in the wash water6.”
With its new AFVT product, Ecolab extends its innovation lead in institutional food safety and cleanliness. The new product is being unveiled May 18-21 at the annual National Restaurant Association Show in Chicago. Additional information on AFVT and food safety can be found at: http://www.whycleanmatters.com/AFVT.
A trusted partner at more than one million customer locations, Ecolab (ECL) is the global leader in water, hygiene and energy technologies and services that protect people and vital resources. With 2012 sales of $12 billion and 44,000 associates, Ecolab delivers comprehensive solutions and on-site service to promote safe food, maintain clean environments, optimize water and energy use and improve operational efficiencies for customers in the food, healthcare, energy, hospitality, commercial laundry and industrial markets in more than 170 countries around the world.
For more Ecolab news and information, visit www.ecolab.com.
1 This product may be used in food establishments that prepare food for immediate consumption such as restaurants, cafeterias, food service operations, deli’s, kitchens and commissaries. At this time, it may not be used in commercial food processing facilities or for produce on the shelves of grocery stores.
2 The product is registered with EPA as an antimicrobial product. The registration number is 1677-234. http://iaspub.epa.gov/apex/pesticides/f?p=PPLS:8:13395206098809::NO::P8_PUID,P8_RINUM:502659,1677-234
3 Escherichia coli O157:H7 (ATCC 43895,35150, 43890), Listeria monocytogenes (ATCC 49594,19114, 19116) and Salmonella enterica (ATCC 10721, 6962,13311)
4 The active ingredient received FDA clearance as a secondary direct food additive. Final clearance was published in the Federal Register on December 4. 2012 (page 71695) http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-12-04/pdf/2012-29279.pdf
5 Product claims are registered with U.S. EPA and an updated label may be in review with state agencies. Please review product label for Claims and Directions for Use.
6 Reduces pathogens on the surface of further processed produce and in the wash water for raw agricultural commodities.