To: David A. David McMurrey

From: Richard Todd Dean

Date: 30 January 19XX

Subj.: Description of my report project

Here is the information on my report project that you requested. I've included a brief discussion of what I plan to include in the report, who the audience of the report will be, what my own background on the topic is, and what graphic aids will be needed in the final report. A tentative outline concludes this memo.

Report Topic and Contents

I plan to do a general feasibility study of the preservation of meat by ionizing radiation. The report will investigate the possibility of ionizing radiation as a replacement for present-day chemical preservatives in meat products. I plan to show that radiation processes can be more effective for killing bacteria, preserving the food for longer periods of time, and making the food more wholesome and safe overall. The report will also compare and suggest which types of irradiation are best for meat preservation. The equipment needed in the process will be discussed in addition to any possible dangers this new process may present to humans. I'll also review cost comparisons. In the introduction there will be a brief history of food preservation and of early uses of radiation for preservation.

Audience and Purpose of the Report

This study will be directed toward the meat packing industry in an effort to encourage it to change its present preservation methods. I will try to show meat-packing companies that, with several important criteria, irradiation is preferable to current methods.

My Background and Library Sources on the Topic

At this point, I know only the basics of radiation chemistry, and I will need to research food preservation and apply my chemistry background in this area. Having begun my preliminary library search, I'm sure that there are plenty of printed resources on the topic, both in and out of the library. The biggest problem I foresee is finding specific costs of the irradiation process, but with letters of inquiry to organizations involved in this new preservation method, I expect to overcome this problem.

Graphic Aids Needed in the Report

There will be no problem finding and using graphic aids for this report. Most of the graphics will be comparison charts showing the advantages and disadvantages of various sources of radiation. Other charts will compare this new method of food preservation to older methods, focusing on bacteria growth, length of storage time, color of meat, and other characteristics of effective meat preservation. I will also include pictures of the process at various stages and the different equipment used.

Tentative Outline of the Project

Here is a tentative outline of the report; I'll keep you informed of changes in it as they occur:
     I. History of food preservation and use of radiation in this field
    II. Comparison of chemical to radiation preservation
   III. Effectiveness of radiation preservation
    IV. Sources of radiation
     V. Installation of radiation equipment in factories
    VI. Cost of the new process compared to the old
   VII. Safety and consumer acceptance of radiation preservation

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