Name: Dan Marino
Hometown: New Brighton, Minn.
Degree Pursuing: Food Science M.S.
Adviser: Joellen Feirtag
Research Title: Evaluating the Effect of Different Salts on Electrolyzed Water Efficacy as a Cleaner and Sanitizer
Electrolyzed water is an up and coming cleaner and sanitizer that is made using water and sodium chloride. It has shown to be a very strong antibacterial as well as a very potent cleaner. Unlike common cleaners, it is environmentally friendly, non-toxic, and cheap. My current research involves using other salts aside from NaCl to see if the efficacy of the cleaner and sanitizer is changed. Additionally, we are working towards finding new uses for electrolyzed water as a cleaner.
How did you become interested in food science?
I ran into food science during my junior year of college. I was a chemistry major and I sorta stumbled onto some food science literature while researching a project for one of my classes. I was not aware that food science was a discipline and the more I looked into it, the more I grew to like it. I have always loved cooking and food in general, so being able to mix my chemistry background with it seemed like a great plan.
Why did you choose the University of Minnesota?
After talking with my adviser, I knew it was the right choice. She was very helpful throughout the entire process and encouraged me throughout to pursue my own ideas during research rather than having a very guided path. Additionally, the faculty here was very helpful and always willing to talk about the department.
How does your research tie into the research being done in your adviser's lab?
The Feirtag lab mostly focuses on food safety. My research focuses on using new technologies to combat bacterial contamination on food processing equipment. We also work with local companies to incorporate this new technolopgy out in the field and see how it would actually work in a real setting rather than just the lab.
After graduation I want to go into the industry and work in product development. I've always been interested in that various unique challenges that product development brings and the various possibilities that exist during the development process.