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Published on Sep 7, 2016
In today’s world, food safety and quality is of outmost importance. In some produce like corn and rice, which are dried before storage, high commodity moisture contents at harvest and high relative humidity storage conditions enable growth of fungi that produce highly toxic compounds (e.g., aflatoxin). Currently, over 4.5 billion people are chronically exposed to aflatoxin in their foods that cause liver cancer and other health problems. At UC Davis, Dr. Irwin Donis-Gonzalez, and his team are focused on engineering practical solutions to ensure food safety and quality for all parts of the world. One of our current projects is evaluating the use of hygroscopic salts and drying beads to keep produce dry and free of moisture, ensuring a safe and practical method of storing dry produce, like corn. For over 100 years, the UC Davis Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering has been utilizing our world renowned faculty and ingenious students to solve the worlds food safety challenges.