Elis Owens
Elis Owens, Ph.D., Director of Technical Services
Elis is part of Birko’s R&D team and is active in developing Birko’s antimicrobial product line and attendant delivery systems. He oversees field trials at customer plants, works with university research partners and outside labs and acts as a government liaison for antimicrobial approvals. Elis also leads and supports Birko’s team of technical representatives in the field. He joined the Birko lab team in 2005 from the brewing industry where he held a variety of primary positions in quality assurance and as head brewer.

Elis earned his Ph.D. from the University of Wales in Cardiff, and did post-doctoral research at Michigan State University’s Center for Microbial Ecology. He has published papers in FEMS Microbiology Ecology and FEMS Microbiology Letters.

He is a member of the International Association for Food Protection, Master Brewers Association of the Americas, American Oil Chemists’ Society, American Society of Brewing Chemists, and is a representative of the Beef Industry Food Safety Council (BIFSCo). He is on the Technical Committee for the Center for Produce Safety, the United Fresh Food Safety and Technology Council, and the PMA’s Science and Technology Committee. He is also a Preventive Control Qualified Individual (PCQI), and was a contributor to the United Fresh Produce Association’s Guidance on Environmental Monitoring and Control of Listeria for the Fresh Produce Industry.

In addition, Owens has been requested as a guest speaker by various associations and events, including the Washington State Tree Fruit Association, the Northwest Food Processors Association, the California Fresh Fruit Association and the PMA Tech Knowledge Symposium.

Elis is named as a co-inventor on a number of Birko’s recent patent applications, including the Beefxide® and Chicxide® blends of lactic and citric acids developed with Dr. Victor Reusch and Terry McAninch, also of Birko.

Elis’ Expertise:
• Controlling foodborne pathogens
• Food safety for produce
• Antimicrobial interventions
• Brewing processes and quality
• Listeria