Wednesday, January 1, 2020 - 14:02

The increasing demand for processed foods, detection of microorganisms in some of these products, and consumer preference for “natural” over synthetic preservatives have driven research in essential oils (EOs) known for decades to have antimicrobial properties. In vitro and in vivo studies have shown that lemongrass EO and its volatiles can inhibit a range of bacteria and fungi known to be the major causative organisms for several storage and food-borne pathogens.

Lemongrass EO has been reported to retard spoilage of bakery products, cheese, fruit juices, and chocolates, among others. The oil has also been shown to be an effective fumigant for stored food commodities due to its bioactivity in the vapor phase. Lemongrass EO was found to significantly reduce colony development against key postharvest pathogens: Colletotrichum coccodesBotrytis cinereaCladosporium herbarum, Rhizopus stolonifera, and Aspergillus niger in vitro. The oil was found to extend the shelf life and sensory properties of refrigerated mussel and vegetables. Reports suggests that lemongrass EO is a safe natural flavor complex, preservative, and food spoilage inhibitor capable of reducing the risk of diseases associated with contaminated products.