University study captures first real-time video of ozone destroying E. coli

Longmark Industries, working in conjunction with researchers from California Poly Technical University, has produced the first-ever microscopic video capture of the real-time destruction of the dangerous food-borne pathogen E. coli 0157:H7 utilizing VeriPureTM ozone food sanitation technology...

PHOENIX, April 20, 2005 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Longmark Industries, working in conjunction with researchers from California Poly Technical University, has produced the first-ever microscopic video capture of the real-time destruction of the dangerous food-borne pathogen E. coli 0157:H7 utilizing VeriPureTM ozone food sanitation technology.

The new video shows for the first time the actual instantaneous cellular disruption of the bacteria with the addition of low levels of ozone gas dissolved in water.

"We've brought nearly 20 years of technology development to achieve a look at the power of ozone food sanitation in a way that's never been done before," stated Longmark's Chief Executive Officer Ron Long, inventor of the new VeriPure Ozone Food Sanitizing System that accomplished the pathogen destruction.

The VeriPure technology is marketed by the company for home food sanitation and water purification. A VeriPure commercial version is available for restaurants and sushi bars.
The university-level testing and video capture of the pathogen destruction was led by Dr. Joseph Montecalvo Jr., past chairman of the Cal Poly Department of Food Science & Nutrition and a member of the Technical Advisory Panel of the USDA National Organic Standards Board. The remarkable footage was captured utilizing an Olympus IX51 Inverted Microscope donated exclusively for the study by Olympus America Inc.
"Food safety at the home level and in restaurants has become a national priority," Montecalvo stated. "That's why visually proving the effects of ozone on pathogens that make people sick is so significant. To our knowledge it's never been done before in real time."

Long, who holds several patents in ozone product technology, and Montecalvo previously worked together designing and executing groundbreaking studies to prove the nearly instantaneous destruction of a variety of food-borne pathogens by ozone, including Salmonella, Staphlococcus, Listeria and Campylobacter, in addition to the lethal E. coli strain.

"The numbers of E. coli colonies utilized in the research were nearly one hundred million times greater than would typically be found on contaminated foods," Montecalvo stated. "The recently completed video documentation agrees directly with our previous studies which show greater than 4-log (99.99%) inactivation of bacteria such as E. coli 0157:H7, Salmonella, Listeria, Staphlococcus and Campylobacter on surfaces of lettuce, meat and poultry with Low Level Ozone TechnologyTM from Longmark Industries. To view the video click on: www.veripurefood.com.

"Our testing of the VeriPure process for controlling dangerous food-borne pathogens has confirmed that low levels of ozone applied to food surfaces can significantly reduce the risk of illness caused by bacteria on produce, fruit, meats, fish and poultry," Montecalvo said.

Ozone technology is becoming a widely used method for pathogen intervention by commercial food processors since its approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 1997, but until the VeriPure system, has not been widely available for consumers and restaurants. Longmark Industries has introduced several products that bring the power of ozone food safety to consumers and restaurants under the VeriPure brand.

"The next phase of our technology expansion will be to introduce the VeriPure product to small organic food growers," Long said.

Montecalvo explained that ozone leaves no chemical residue on foods, making it the preferred method for retaining the "organic" integrity of produce and fruit treated with it. Ozone has been used to purify water for more than 100 years. The VeriPure products also produce bottled water quality drinking water.

Originally, Longmark, founded in 1987, manufactured commercial purification systems utilizing ozone technology for food, water and wastewater. Longmark Industries LLC, has research & development, marketing and sales offices in Phoenix, a sales office in Tokyo, and manufacturing facilities in Green Bay, Wis. It's a privately held company.

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