Irradiation of food and supplements is used in more than 60 countries to prolong stability and extend shelf lives. Approximately 500,000 tons of food products are irradiated worldwide each year, particularly herbs and spices. Irradiation is applied on food for the following reasons to kill microorganisms in herbs and spices, to prevent sprouting and germination of potatoes, onions and garlic, to kill or sterilize insects in cereals, dried fruit, nuts and vegetables, to defer maturing and ripening in fruit and vegetables, to prolong the date-of-expiry by killing microorganisms in meat and fish.
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