FVSUag Directory


Hema L. Degala

Research Assistant

(478) 825-4317


Research Area: Food Safety

Research Interests:
  • Non-thermal food processing and preservation methods for improving food safety.
  • Application of engineering principles in evaluating the quality of foods.

Contribution to recent projects:

  • Extend the shelf-life and quality of pecans in storage by exploring various novel non-thermal intervention methods, such as pulsed UV-light and essential oils.
  • Predicting harvest maturity and enhancing yield and quality of peanuts using sensor-based system and economic appraisal.
  • Synergistic Antimicrobial Efficacy of Pulsed UV-light and Lemongrass Oil in Inactivating Escherichia coli K12 on Meat Surfaces.

Master of Science: Biotechnology - Fort Valley State University (2017)

Bachelor of Education: Biological Sciences - Pondicherry University (1996)

Bachelor of Science: Nutrition - Osmania University (1995)

Recent Publications/Presentations:

Kannan, G, A. K. Mahapatra, and H. L. Degala. 2021. Preharvest management and postharvest intervention strategies to reduce Escherichia coli contamination in goat meat: Review. Animals, 11, 2943. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11102943.

Bryant, M., H. L. Degala, A. K. Mahapatra, R. M. Gosukonda, and G. Kannan. 2021. Inactivation of Escherichia coli K12 by pulsed UV-light on goat meat and beef: Microbial responses and modeling. International Journal of Food Science & Technology. doi:10.1111/ijfs.14733.

Degala, H. L., J. R. Scott, F. I. Rico Espinoza, A. K. Mahapatra, and G. Kannan. 2020. Synergistic effect of ozonated and electrolyzed water on the inactivation kinetics of Escherichia coli on goat meat. Journal of Food Safety, 40(1), 1-7.

Mahapatra, A. K., D. E. Ekefre, H. L. Degala, S. M. Punnuri, and T. H. Terrill. 2019. Moisture-dependent physical and thermal properties of Sericea lespedeza seeds. Applied Engineering in Agriculture, 35(3), 389-397.

Arya, R., M.  Bryant, H. L. Degala, A. K. Mahapatra, and G. Kannan. 2018. Effectiveness of a low‐cost household electrolyzed water generator in reducing the populations of Escherichia coli K12 on inoculated beef, chevon, and pork surfaces. Journal of Food Processing and Preservation, 42(6), 1-6.

Degala, H. L., A. K. Mahapatra, A. Demirci, and G. Kannan. 2018. Evaluation of non-thermal hurdle technology for ultraviolet-light to inactivate Escherichia coli K12 on goat meat surfaces. Food Control, 90, 113-120.

Degala, H. L., J. R. Scott, P. Nakkiran, A. K. Mahapatra, and G. Kannan. 2016. Inactivation of E. coli O157:H7 on goat meat surface using ozonated water alone and in combination with electrolyzed oxidizing water. American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) Paper No. 162462209. St. Joseph, Mich.: ASABE.