Birko’s Dr. Elis Owens to Participate as Instructor at UC Davis Produce Safety Workshop

October 24, 2013

HENDERSON, Colo. – Dr. Elis Owens, senior chemist/microbiologist for Birko, a leading provider of antimicrobial process aids and sanitation chemistry for the produce industry, will be an instructor at “Produce Safety: A Science-based Framework Workshop,” sponsored by the UC Davis Postharvest Technology Center, Nov. 5-7. The workshop will be in Meeting Room B at the UC Davis Conference Center.

Owens will discuss fundamental concepts for developing a cleaning and sanitation program for produce processors. The interactive two-and-a-half day workshop will focus on microbial produce safety systems from preharvest to postharvest.

The keynote speaker for the workshop is Bill Marler, of Marler Clark, Seattle, which specializes in representing victims of food poisoning. Workshop instructors include Jim Gorny, vice president of food safety and technology for the Produce Marketing Association; Trevor Suslow, of the Department of Plant Sciences at UC Davis; Michelle Jay-Russell, of the Western Center for Food Safety at UC Davis; and Laura Guidici Mills, of LGM Consulting, Barrington, Ill.

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

About the Postharvest Technology Center

The Postharvest Technology Center at UC Davis seeks to reduce postharvest losses and improve the quality, safety and marketability of fresh horticultural products for the produce value chain.