Natural and Simple Pathogen Mitigation for Milling Operations with Nature’s Grain Guard™

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The old paradigm consumers held that flour is a low-risk product no longer holds. Foodborne illnesses from E. coli (STEC) and Salmonella are steadily ticking up and the source of the contamination is found in everything from incoming wheat and grain to outgoing flour, mixes, and raw dough.

Contamination Quick Facts:

  • Pathogens can survive from 12 weeks to 2 years
  • Outbreak/recall events increased 7x between 2016 and 2019
  • The average direct cost of a recall is $10 million

Millers have no control over how consumers are handling and consuming their products, but the onus is still on them to ensure product safety. Add in the stricter standards of the Food and Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), and millers are feeling the squeeze. Stuck between the extensive costs of traditional treatments and the rising costs of recalls, millers have long-awaited a simplified solution.

 

The Long-Awaited Solution is Nature’s Grain Guard™

Mills often attempt interventions using the more popular heat treatment and the less-desired chemical-based antimicrobials. While they are both an effective means to reduce pathogens, they may impact flour functionality and organoleptic properties. Implementation of each can cost well into the hundreds of thousands and neither are easily scaled. Chemical antimicrobials can also corrode equipment and reduce its lifespan, and their hazardous nature requires implementation of even costlier safety procedures.

Enter Nature’s Grain Guard bacteriophages – or phages – which act as nature’s targeted solution for reducing STEC and Salmonella in milling.

Treatment comparison between Nature's Grain Guard, chemical antimicrobials, and heat

 

A Partnership for the Phages  

To create Nature’s Grain Guard, Lesaffre teamed up with Intralytix, a leading biotechnology company with more than 20 years dedicated to the discovery, production, and marketing of bacteriophage-based products to control pathogens. This core technology is a top natural solution employed in food processing, environmental clean-up, sanitation, consumer products, and problems of antibiotic resistance in human therapy.

 

How Bacteriophages Work

Phages are earth’s most abundant microorganism, with more than 100 million unique species existing globally. And they’re everywhere: in our food, our bodies, and even our oceans. These microorganisms eat bacteria with incredible efficiency, targeting specific strains and leaving the rest alone. They work by invading and killing their host, and, after each phage-bacteria encounter, 10-to-20-fold more phages are produced. For decades, bacteriophages have been used to reduce bacteria in the processing of poultry, fish, meat, and even plant-based ingredients. They have also been used as an alternative to antibiotics and are currently being studied for use against multidrug-resistant bacteria.

 

Benefits of Nature’s Grain Guard

Nature’s Grain Guard is an organic, customizable pathogen reduction solution made specifically for your mill’s individual needs. Stand-out benefits of our bacteriophages include:

  • Individually Customized: Concentration levels can be adjusted to meet individual mill log-control objectives.
  • Naturally Safe: Nature’s Grain Guard is organic, non-GMO, Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) certified, and FDA approved for food.
  • Clean Label: It works by killing pathogens rather than inhibiting or suppressing them. As a processing aid, no labeling is required.
  • Fully Inert: There is no impact on physical and organoleptic properties of food products, making it an ideal treatment for grain and grain-based products.

 

Discover how Nature’s Grain Guard can protect your flour and flour products from pathogenic contamination. Contact naturesgrainguard@lesaffre.com today!

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