Joseph D. Eifert



  • Ph.D., Food Science and Technology, Virginia Tech, 1994
  • M.S., Food Science and Technology, Virginia Tech, 1991
  • B.S., Biology, Loyola Marymount University, 1980

Employment History

2004 - present Associate Professor & Extension Specialist, Virginia Tech; Blacksburg, VA
1998 - 2004 Assistant Professor & Extension Specialist, Virginia Tech; Blacksburg, VA
1996 - 1997 Manager of Microbiology, Nestlé USA, Dublin, OH
1989 - 1994 Graduate Teaching Assistant, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA
1983 - 1989 Chemist, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Los Angeles, CA

Current Teaching Responsibilities

Global Food Laws and Regulations (graduate, 3 credits), biannually, 2000-present

Food Animal Product Safety for Veterinarians (graduate, 2 credits), annually, 2008-present

Applied Food Microbiology and Sanitation, (graduate, 3 credits) biannually, 2007-present

Food, War and Conflict (undergraduate, 3 credits), annually, 2015-present

Food Safety and Quality Assurance (undergraduate, 3 credits), annually, 2017-present


Research Interests

  • Develop methods to prevent bacterial foodborne pathogens from contaminating poultry processing plant environments and reduce the level of these pathogens on live birds and finished products
  • Determine ways to improve the microbiological quality and shelf life of ready-to-eat poultry products and fruits and vegetables through design of appropriate microbiological sampling techniques and sampling plans
  • Optimizing the quantitative recovery of pathogenic microorganisms from foods, food contact surfaces, and food processing environments.

Recently Completed Theses and Dissertations Directed:


Wu, J. (2014) Inhibiting Listeria monocytogenes, Vibrio parahaemolyticus and Morganella morganii with aqueous methanol extracts of Punica granatum and Galla chinensis  (co-advised with M. Jahncke)

Al-Shuniaber, M. (2014) Risk analysis based on performance criteria: a food safety control system and decision-making tool to control Salmonella from whole broilers. 

Concha-Meyer, A.  (2013) Survival of Listeria monocytogenes on blueberries (Vaccinium corymbosum) and shelf life determination under controlled atmosphere storage.

Saucedo Alderete, R. (2013) Post-harvest spray treatments to reduce Salmonella contamination on cantaloupe surfaces.


Masri, H.  (2013) Optimizing sample plans to improve microbiological safety in a food processing plant.

Waldron, C.  (2013) Efficacy of delmopinol in preventing the attachment of Campylobacter jejuni to chicken, stainless steel and high-density polyethylene.

Schroeder, M. (2012) Association of Campylobacter spp. levels between chicken grow-out environmental samples and processed carcasses

Johnson, A. (2010) Airborne Campylobacter spp. in a poultry processing plant.    

O'Connor, S. (2009) Development and evaluation of food safety signs.   

Kuntz, T. (2009) Campylobacter jejuni and Salmonella spp. detection in chicken grow-out houses by environmental sampling methods.

Baker, R. (2008) Fluorescent microspheres as surrogates for Salmonella enterica serotype Typhimurium in recovery studies from stainless steel.

Recent Peer-Reviewed Publications

Saucedo-Alderete, R.O., Eifert, J.D., Boyer, R.R., Williams, R.C., and Welbaum, G.E. 2017.  Delmopinol hydrochloride spray reduces Salmonella on cantaloupe surfaces. Food Science & Nutrition, 00:1–8.

Wu, J., Eifert, J.D., Jahncke, M.L., O’Keefe, S.F., and Welbaum, G.E. 2016. Pomegranate peel (Punica granatum L) extract and Chinese gall (Galla chinensis) extract inhibited Vibrio parahaemolyticus and Listeria monocytogenes on cooked shrimp and raw tuna. Food Control, 59:695-699.

Dev Kumar, G, Williams, RC, Alqublan, H, Sriranganathan, N., Boyer, R., and Eifert, J. 2017. Airborne soil particulates as vehicles for Salmonella contamination of tomatoes. Int. J. Food Micro. 243:90-95.

Concha-Meyer, A.A., Eifert, J.D., Williams, R.C., Marcy, J.E. and Welbaum, G.E. 2016. Listeria monocytogenes survival in the presence of malic acid, lactic acid or blueberry extract. J. Berry Res.  DOI: 10.3233/JBR-160143

Schroeder, M., Yang, L., Eifert, J., Boyer, R., Chase, M., and Nieto-Montenegro, S.  2016. Evaluation of how different signs affect poultry processing employees’ hand washing practices. Food Cont. 68:1-6.

Schroeder, M., Galagarza, O., Eifert, J., Boyer, R., Chase, M., Nieto-Montenegro, S. 2016. Employee perceptions of food safety pictograms at meat and poultry processing plants leads to new hand washing pictogram. Food Prot. Trends 36(3):195-207.

Dev Kumar, G., Williams, R., Sumner, S., Eifert, J.  2015. Effect of Ozone and Ultraviolet Light on Listeria monocytogenes Populations in RTE Chill Brines. J. Food Control.  doi: 10.1016/j.foodcont.2015.04.037.

Concha-Meyer, A., Eifert, J., Williams, R., Marcy, J., Welbaum, G.  2015. Shelf life determination of fresh blueberries (Vaccinium corymbosum) stored under controlled atmosphere and ozone. International Journal of Food Science. vol. 2015, Article ID 164143, 9 pages. doi: 10.1155/2015/164143 

Concha-Meyer, A., Eifert, J., Williams, R., Marcy, J., and Welbaum, G.  2014. Survival of Listeria monocytogenes on fresh blueberries (Vaccinium corymbosum) stored under controlled atmosphere and ozone. J. Food Prot. 77(5): 832-836.

Schroeder, M., Eifert, J., Ponder M. and Schmale, III, D.  2014. Association of Campylobacter spp. levels between chicken grow-out environmental samples and processed carcasses. Poul. Sci. 93: 734-741.

Maitland, J., Boyer, R., Gallagher, D., Duncan, S., Bauer, N., Kause, J., and Eifert, J.  2013. Tracking cross contamination transfer dynamics at a mock retail deli market using GloGermTM.  J. Food Prot. 76(2): 272-282.

Aviles, B., Klotz, C., Eifert, J., Williams, R. and Ponder, M.  2013. Biofilms promote survival and virulence of Salmonella enterica sv. Tennessee during prolonged dry storage and after passage through an in vitro digestion system.  Int. J. Food Microbiol. 162(3): 252-259.

Robertson, L., Boyer, R., Chapman, B., Eifert, J., Villalba, A. and Franz, N.  2013. Educational needs assessment and practices of grocery store food handlers through survey and observational data collection.   Food Cont. 34(2):707-713.

Parikh, P., Williams, R., Mallikarjunan, P., Eifert, J. and Marcy, J.  2012. Control of Listeria monocytogenes in recycled chill brine using ultraviolet light and antimicrobial agents. J. Food Saf. 32(2): 169-175.



Dr. Joseph D. Eifert
  • (540) 231-3658
    401-B HABB1 (0924)
    1230 Washington Street SW
    Blacksburg, VA 24061