FDA Extends GRAS Approval LISTEX(TM) to all Food Products

Jul 03, 2007, 01:00 ET from EBI Food Safety

    WAGENINGEN, The Netherlands, July 3 /PRNewswire/ --
     - The FDA and USDA Announced Today They Have Approved LISTEX(TM) P100,
 the Natural Bacteriophage Product Against Listeria, as GRAS (Generally
 Recognised as Safe), for all Food Products
     In the fight against Listeria, one of the most dangerous food
 pathogens, US food processing companies can now apply a novel yet natural
 tool: LISTEX(TM) bacteriophages. The FDA and USDA have approved this
 product from The Netherlands as GRAS, based on extensive safety and
 efficacy data and organoleptics tests confirming that LISTEX(TM) is safe
 and has no impact on taste, smell, colour, and other physical properties of
 treated products.
     Bacteriophages ('phage') are the most abundant micro-organisms on
 earth. Fresh water and seawater can contain as many as 1 billion phages per
 ml, while in fresh and processed meat and meat products, more than 100
 million viable phages per gram are often present. Phages are harmless to
 humans, animals and plants, and target only bacterial cells. They are
 extremely specific in regard to the bacteria they recognize. The LISTEX(TM)
 bacteriophages target only Listeria bacteria (leaving desirable bacteria in
 place), and are easy to apply in production processes.
     In October 2006 the FDA had already proclaimed GRAS for LISTEX(TM)
 against Listeria in cheese. The extension to all products susceptible to
 Listeria, opens the door for the meat and fish industry to apply
 LISTEX(TM). Earlier this month, the Dutch designated inspection office SKAL
 confirmed the 'organic' status of LISTEX(TM) under EU law, as a result of
 which it can be used in the EU in regular and organic products.
     EBI Food Safety's CEO, Mark Offerhaus: "Food Safety now tops the agenda
 of US food processing companies and consumers, who are insisting on 'green'
 solutions, rather than chemicals. Natural bacteriophages prove to be a
 unique solution, where increased safety does not come at the expense of
 product characteristics. US food processors can now benefit from
 LISTEX(TM), like their European counterparts."
     According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Listeriosis, the
 disease caused by Listeria monocytogenes, is one of the most severe food
 borne infections, with a mortality rate of 30%. It can take weeks after
 exposure before an infection becomes apparent. The US Food Safety and
 Inspection Service maintains a zero tolerance policy for the bacterium,
 which grows at refrigeration temperature and is omnipresent. Risk groups
 include the Young, Old, Immunocompromised and Pregnant.
     About EBI Food Safety
     EBI Food Safety (www.ebifoodsafety.com), located in Wageningen ("Food
 Valley"), The Netherlands, develops and markets natural bacteriophage
 products against dangerous food pathogens and is viewed as product leader
 in this field. In 2006 the company was honored with the Technology
 Innovation Award by Frost & Sullivan. In 2007 the company was elected as
 one of Holland's 25 most promising young enterprises by FEM Business
 Magazine. The company's scientific network includes collaborations with
 universities and research centers around the world.

SOURCE EBI Food Safety