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Early 1900

  • MIT biology professor shows that irradiation could destroy bacteria in food and proposed using such a process to preserve foodstuffs
  • First patents issued for a food preservation based on irradiation to kill bacteria in food
  • U.S.Patent is granted for process to kill Trichinella spiralis in meat using x-rays
1925 - 1927
  • Animal feeding studies are performed to assess the wholesomeness of irradiated food
  • World’s first electron beam accelerator is invented
  • U.S. Army begins irradiative testing of common foods
  • MIT scientists show that x-rays can be used to preserve ground beef
  • On the initiative of President Eisenhower, an era of international study evolves investigating the wholesomeness and safety of irradiated foods ("Atoms-for-Peace" Program)
1955 - 1965
  • Based on extensive studies, the Office of the Surgeon General of the U.S. Army concludes in 1965 that irradiated foods are safe to eat
  • FDA approves the use of irradiation for wheat and wheat powder to disinfest from insects
  • FDA approves the use of irradiation for white potatoes to inhibit sprouting and extend shelf life
  • First pilot pasteurization plant to be built in Carroll, Iowa
  • Astronauts on the Apollo 17 moon shot eat irradiated food, and ever since space flights have included sandwiches made with pasteurized meats
  • The Joint Expert Committee on the Wholesomeness of Foods formed by the World Health Organization, Food and Agriculture Organization and other UN organizations designates that foods irradiated at appropriate doses are safe and wholesome
  • USDA and U.S. Army merge longstanding military food irradiation program
  • FDA approves the use of irradiation for spices and dry vegetable seasonings to control contamination and to destroy Trichinella spiralis
  • FDA approves the use of electron beam for fresh fruits and vegetables to delay ripening and disinfest insects
  • FDA approves irradiated poultry to control Salmonella and other foodborne bacteria
  • USDA approves irradiation of poultry
  • FDA approves irradiative treatment of poultry feeds and their ingredients
  • FDA approves the use of irradiation for red meats to control foodborne pathogens and extend shelf life
  • The Joint Expert Committee designates that foods irradiated at any dose should be considered as safe and wholesome as foods treated by any other conventional process
  • Titan opens the world’s first electron beam facility; USDA approves irradiation of red meat
  • Hawaii Pride open the nation’s first facility for the disinfestations of tropical fruit
  • FDA approves treatment of shelled eggs to protect consumers from Salmonella
  • Plantable Seeds are approved for irradiation to prevent sprouting
  • FDA approves the irradiation treatment of animal feeds, pet treats, and their ingredients to protect animals and consumer handlers from Salmonella found in pet treats and feeds
  • Texas A&M University operates the world’s First Electron Beam Research Facility
  • Investment group acquires Sioux City E-beam Irradiation facility and reopens under the name SADEX Corporation
  • FDA Approves the ionizing radiation of frozen, molluscan shellfish (clams, oysters, etc.)
  • SADEX processes first products under new banner, jumpstarting the future of cold pasteurization
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