Cargill issued US patent for 'antimicrobial salt solutions for cheese processing applications'

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United States Patent no. 8,623,439, issued on Jan. 7, was assigned to Cargill Inc. (Wayzata, Minn.).

"Antimicrobial salt solutions for cheese processing applications" was invented by Robert Scott Koefod (Maple Grove, Minn.) and Timothy Freier (Maple Grove, Minn.).

According to the abstract* released by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office: "Antimicrobial formulations and solutions for food safety and quality applications are disclosed. Because some of these formulations and solutions contain a substantial concentration of salt, they are adaptable to a variety of food-processing applications, such as for chilling brine applications, disinfecting meat baths/rinses, beef injection brines, poultry chill tanks, brines used in cheese manufacture, as a wash to kill salmonella and other bacteria on hard-boiled eggs or egg shells, and as a wash to disinfect produce, which can become contaminated with salmonella and other pathogenic bacteria in the field. These uses of concentrated salt solutions that depress the freezing point of the solution provide a low temperature bath or shower in which food products can be cooled. One embodiment comprises between 25 ppm and 100,000 ppm surfactant and between 72% and 99.99% salt. This blend can then be dissolved in water to make a solution of between about 1% total solids by weight up to the saturation point, which can be used as an antimicrobial solution for food safety applications."

The patent was filed on Sept. 30, 2010, under Application No. 12/895,380.

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