Method for the broad spectrum prevention and removal of microbial contamination of food products by quaternary ammonium compounds

Cesar M. Compadre
Philip J. Breen
Hamid Salari
E. Kim Fifer
Danny L. Lattin
Michael F. Slavik, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville
Yanbin Li, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

Michael F. Slavik, Department of Poultry Science

Yanbin Li, Department of Crop, Soil, and Environmental Sciences


A method of using quaternary ammonium compounds for inhibiting attachment of and removing a broad spectrum of foodborne microbial contamination from food products. The method uses quaternary ammonium compounds for inhibiting attachment of and removing microorganisms such as, Staphylococcus, Campylobacter, Arcobacter, Listeria, Aeromonas, Bacillus, Salmonella, non-toxin-producing Escherichia, and pathogenic toxin-producing Escherichia, such as 0157:H7; fungi, such as Aspergillus flavus and Penicillium chrysogenum; and parasites, such as Entameba histolytica from a broad range of food. The foods that can be treated by this method are meat, seafood, vegetables, and fruit. One of the treatment methods is spraying quaternary ammonium compounds on the food products to prevent broad spectrum foodborne microbial contamination. New formulations of quaternary ammonium compounds combined with glycerin and/or ethyl alcohol provides a concentrated formulation for industrial use and a diluted formulation for use in spraying methods.