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Food Chem Toxicol. 2008 Aug;46(8):2895-902. doi: 10.1016/j.fct.2008.05.033. Epub 2008 Jun 4.

Microbiological characterization of table olives commercialized in Portugal in respect to safety aspects.

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  • 1CIMO/Escola Superior Agrária, Instituto Politécnico de Bragança, Campus Santa Apolónia, Apartado 1 172, 5301-855 Bragança, Portugal.


Table olives are a traditional component of the Mediterranean diet and are largely consumed in the world. There are different trade treatments that originate different types of olives. The aim of the present work was to proceed to the microbiological characterization of table olives commercialized in the Portuguese market, with respect to their microbiological safety. The microbiological characterization was made in the olive pulp and packing brine of thirty-five table olives samples of different types and trade treatments, namely natural olives Cv. Galega (NOG), natural turning colour olives (NTCO), green olives (GO), black ripe olives (BO) and natural olives purchased in the traditional market and obtained from traditional producers (NOt). Simultaneously it was verified specific legislation of the table olives in what it concerns to labeling rules, pH values and the identification of isolated yeasts. In general, table olives consumed showed acceptable security with exception of four NOt samples that presented Staphylococcus aureus. In a considerable number of samples high number of microorganisms indicators of contaminations were observed that reveals the need of optimization the hygienic procedures during production process to improve the quality and safety of table olives. During the work seven yeasts were isolated from olive pulp and brine.

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