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Int J Food Microbiol. 2008 Mar 31;123(1-2):130-3. doi: 10.1016/j.ijfoodmicro.2007.12.011. Epub 2008 Feb 5.

The effect of blast chilling on occurrence of human pathogenic Yersinia enterocolitica compared to Campylobacter spp. and numbers of hygienic indicators on pig carcasses.

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1
Norwegian School of Veterinary Science, Department of Food Safety and Infection Biology, P. O. Box 8146 Dep., N-0033 Oslo, Norway. truls.nesbakken@veths.no

Abstract

In this study, the occurrence of Yersinia enterocolitica on pig carcasses was compared to the occurrence of Campylobacter spp., and to the numbers of aerobic micro-organisms, coliform bacteria, thermotolerant coliform bacteria, and Escherichia coli before and after blast chilling. Y. enterocolitica O:3/biovar 4 was isolated from five (8.3%) of 60 carcasses before blast chilling, and also from five of them 1 h after blast chilling. Therefore this procedure does not seem to have a significant effect on the occurrence of pathogenic Y. enterocolitica on pig carcasses. Y. enterocolitica O:9/biovar 2 was isolated from a pig source in Norway for the first time when this sero/biovariant was isolated from one of the carcasses before blast chilling. Campylobacter spp. was isolated from 34 (56.7%) of 60 carcass samples before blast chilling. After blast chilling Campylobacter spp. was isolated from only one (1.7%) of the 60 carcasses. There was a significant decrease of the numbers of coliform bacteria, thermotolerant coliform bacteria and E. coli after blast chilling. The number of aerobic micro-organisms did not decrease after this step. In contrast to the drastic decrease in the occurrence of campylobacter-positive carcasses and the significant decrease of the numbers of coliform bacteria, thermotolerant coliform bacteria and E. coli, blast chilling does not seem to have a significant effect on the occurrence of human pathogenic Y. enterocolitica on pig carcasses.

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