Food Microbiology and Safety

  • Rapid molecular detection of foodborne bacterial and viral pathogens; novel efficacious control and inactivation strategies for foodborne pathogens; survival, fate and transmission of foodborne pathogens in the environment

  • ​Growth, survival, and detection of Escherichia coli O157:H7, Listeria monocytogenes, and Salmonella in foods; ecology and control of Escherichia coli O157:H7, Salmonella, and Listeria monocytogenes in fruit juices, fresh produce, and ready-to-eat meats; molecular characterization of foodborne pathogens using real-time PCR, real-time RT-PCR, PFGE, and DNA microarrays; use of novel processing/antimicrobial technologies for control of foodborne pathogens and spoilage organisms.

Food Bioploymers

  • The Research in the Food BioPolymers - Biophysics Group is based on the integration of food science, physical chemistry, material sciences and engineering, and chemical engineering. The applied research in our group is focused on novel materials using physically-inspired principles, including food materials or non-food ones relevant to food systems. The fundamental research is focused on elucidating the correlations between molecular interactions, nano-/micro-/macroscopic structures, and functionalities of food materials. Our current research areas include: 
    Delivery Systems for Food Ingredients - antimicrobials, nutraceuticals, flavorants, colorants 
    Nanotechnology - nanoscale materials 
    Interfacial Phenomena and Engineering - novel interfacial technologies 
    Structure/Function Correlations of Food Materials 
    For more information check out Food Bioploymers.


Food Quality

  • Quality​ attributes of fruits and vegetables affected by raw materials, processing technologies including packaging techniques, ozonation, chemical treatments, refrigeration, dehydration or thermal processing. Also evaluation of the antioxidant changes in fruits and vegetables as determined by ORAC (Oxygen radical absorbance capacity) and lycopene changes in Tomatoes due to ozonation treatment.

Sensory Evaluation​ Services

  • ​The Sensory Science and Innovation Center offers a variety of services to those industries that are interested in the consumer perception of a product, including cosmetics, personal care products, food/beverage, and textiles.  For more information check out Sensory Science and Innovation Center​.
       For information regarding sensory evaluation services, contact:

        Dr. Curtis Luckett

        Dept. of Food Science 

        2510 River Drive

        Knoxville, TN 37996-4539

        Phone: 865-974-7298