Low-moisture foods, such as cereals, flour, dried fruit and nuts, have been recalled repeatedly in the last few years, posing health risks to consumers and economic threats to businesses.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture National Institute for Food and Agriculture (USDA NIFA) Sustainable Agriculture Systems (SAS) Center for Low-Moisture Food Safety aims to address these concerns as a go-to source for research and consumer education on the topic. 

Based out of Michigan State University, our effort is funded through a five-year, $9.8 million USDA NIFA grant. This project takes a holistic approach at reducing the risk of Salmonella, E. coli, and Listeria from harvest to consumer by drawing on the expertise of economists, engineers, microbiologists, consumer educators and risk modelers from institutions and agencies across the U.S.

Collaborators include: Purdue University, Ohio State University, University of California-Davis, Washington State University, University of Arkansas, Illinois Institute of Technology, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). 

Our researchers and educators work with a stakeholder advisory group representing farmer-owned cooperatives, commodity groups, processing companies, equipment suppliers, and food retailers to develop solutions and programs to implement and increase knowledge and adaptation of food safety issues and practices. 

Through research and outreach, our team will work to improve public health, increase consumer and industry knowledge of low-moisture food safety, and help protect the sustainability of the low-moisture food industry.

We are supported by funding from USDA NIFA AFRI grant 2020-68012-31822.