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The search for natural biocontrol agents that allow the production of foods that are safe for human consumption and do not impact the taste, texture, and nutritional quality of the food, is a constant challenge for diverse food industries worldwide, particularly as the human population continues to rise globally, and multiple antibiotic resistance in pathogenic bacteria is increasingly prevalent. Bacteriophages (phages), the naturally occurring predators of bacteria, are harmless to humans and animals and are ubiquitous in the environment — and as such, have been recognised as promising antimicrobial agents to help control specific bacterial pathogens in food production. This short review details recent developments in relation to phage biocontrol in food, highlighting both their applicability for enhancing microbial safety and also the challenges within this area of food biotechnology. It also highlights developments in the use of phages for pathogen detection.
Endersen, L. & Coffey, A., 2020. The use of bacteriophages for food safety. Current Opinion in Food Science, 36, pp.1–8. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cofs.2020.10.006.