In August 2012, the world's first MATS microwave food sterilization system was installed at AmeriQual in Evansville, IN. This MATS-B device, designed for recipe and process development, incorporates the only microwave technology accepted by the FDA for food sterilization. AmeriQual will serve as a research & development facility for food manufacturers who want to explore the benefits the MATS microwave sterilization system can deliver.
For decades, realizing the promise of rapid sterilization using microwaves has been a dream of the shelf-stable food industry. Washington State University in collaboration with Natick Soldier Center formed an industrial consortium to obtain regulatory acceptance for 915 MHz single-mode microwave sterilization. Upon receiving that acceptance, the technology was licensed to Food Chain Safety who developed the technology into a commercial reality. Rob Wilson, CEO Food Chain Safety said, "This MATS-B installation represents the culmination of years of development work and the start of an exciting new era in food processing."
Major benefits of the MATS microwave sterilization system include:
• It delivers food that not only looks better but also tastes much better than canned foods
• Maintains nutritional value of the food.
• Uses high-power microwave energy to heat packaged food to sterilization in a fraction of the time required with traditional canning processes.
• Consistently heats products in a repeatable, measurable pattern.
• The continuous process allows manufacturers to achieve higher throughput and lower production costs and provide workers with better work environments vs. traditional canning operations.
• The new preservation technology offers great opportunities to create new and high quality products that are not possible with conventional methods.