On another thread I mentioned testing a miniture mold-eliminating ionizer. You can read background here
. Before the ionizer test I had a terrible time lately controlling mold (mostly blue) and if I put a fresh cheese in there there would be surface mold within two days. I had to resort to vacuum bagging the cheeses earlier than I liked and planned to clean my cave but then I thought it would be a good test for the ionizer under very difficult conditions (i.e. an infected cave) so I unbagged all the cheeses and started the test at 55F and 90% RH (5% higher than usual but wanted to make it a good test).
Results after one week the cheeses are pristine with no surface mold at all
. Instead there is a very nice very light white exterior similar to what you see with a rustic aged cheddar. Usually when I pull cheeses out to wipe or wash I do a quick smell check and instead of a slight musky smell (if mold is there) or a "refridgerator" smell these all had distinctly sweet smells. While I didn't cut any (yet) the rinds seemed soft perhaps due to the higher %RH?
So the question is what should I do now? I've had these ionizers for a couple of years but didn't try to sell them because I was worried about it's effect on beneficial mold, bloomy rinds, etc. But for us small scale cheese makers we can isolate the blues and bloomy's in minicaves and run the ionizer for everything else. If you're making all natural rind pressed cheese one of these as small as they are should handle a pretty good sized cave (they are installed in houses, hospitals, schools etc. but they haven't been tested in larger cheese caves as far as I know). Ozone generators have been used for commercial purposes and Caldwell even discusses them for controlling cheese mites (see pg. 95-96 of her book) but these ionizers have none of the health risks that O3 generators do.
Is this a commercial product to consider offering?