News | May 7, 1999

Saratoga Brands Invests in Microwave Food Pasteurization Technology

Specialty foods importer Saratoga Brands Inc. (Lakewood, NJ) has signed an agreement to acquire Micromac Systems Inc., a private company that designs bacteria-killing microwave systems for foods.

"Saratoga has been investigating the single greatest problem facing the food industry today, the need to provide ensured reliability on the purity of food products purchased by the consumer, and effectively reducing or eliminating the risk of food contamination," said Scott Halperin, Saratoga's chairman and CEO. "We believe Micromac can fill this need," he added.

Saratoga said the Micromac systems, which have been used in Europe and the Far East, eliminate e.coli, listeria and salmonella bacteria in beef and other food products, without affecting taste or texture.

Micromac's process uses microwave technology, rather than irradiation, to pasteurize and sterilize food products. The cost of the system ranges from $300,000 to several million dollars, depending on size and complexity. Saratoga said no competing microwave systems are currently available.

"We are excited that Saratoga has agreed to market this technology and level of food safety to the North American market,"' said Micromac president, Mario Bassani.

The acquisition of Micromac is subject to the completion of a definitive acquisition agreement and customary due diligence review by the parties.

Saratoga Brands' Cucina Classica Italiana subsidiary imports and produces under license Italian specialty cheeses and other premium specialty foods, including the world-renowned brands from Egidio Galbani S.p.A. Saratoga Brands' Mobile Caterers, Inc. subsidiary is a food processor and distributor. It services mobile caterers as well as food distribution to other commissaries and vending accounts throughout New England.