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Light-Emitting Diode for the Inactivation of Microorganisms on Fruits and Vegetables

  • Anbazhagi Muthukumar
Chapter
Part of the Microorganisms for Sustainability book series (MICRO, volume 17)

Abstract

The light-emitting diodes (LEDs) for the inactivation of microorganisms on fruits and vegetables have been recognized as an innovative, non-thermal, as well as non-chemical treatment for disinfection process. However, with the advancement of technology, including gaining devices with better luminous output; low radiant heat emissions; high emissions of monochromatic light; long life expectancy; mechanical robustness; and a greater diversity of peak wavelengths, LEDs have shown more applications in the food industry, especially in the areas of microbiological quality. Therefore, the methods seem to be rapid, efficient, and reliable in reducing thermal damage of food and are suitable in cold-storage applications, as well as more effective in increasing the shelf life of food materials along with good preservation ability. Executing LEDs in the food industry has been showing enhanced nutritive quality of foods in the postharvest stage, an increased ripening rate of fruits, and deterrence in fungal infections. LEDs can also be used together with photosensitizers or photocatalysts to inactivate pathogenic bacteria on fruits and vegetables. Even though the technique is more environmentally friendly rather than traditional technologies, several challenges and limitations are identified, including the difficulty in acceptability of fruits and vegetables stored and processed under LED lighting, optimizing LED lighting regimens for postharvest storage, the stability of inactive microorganisms, spoilage of enzymes, etc. However, these methods can provide a non-thermal means of keeping food safe without the use of chemical sanitizers or additives and may prevent the development of bacterial resistance.

Keywords

Bacterial inactivation Disinfection Food preservation Light-emitting diode 

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anbazhagi Muthukumar
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Environmental Science, School of Earth Science SystemsCentral University of KeralaKasaragodIndia

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