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J Appl Bacteriol. 1991 Jan;70(1):40-6.

Effects of gaseous environment and temperature on the storage behaviour of Listeria monocytogenes on chicken breast meat.

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Agricultural and Food Research Council, Institute of Food Research--Bristol Laboratory, UK.


Portions of skinless chicken breast meat (pH 5.8) were inoculated with a strain of Listeria monocytogenes and stored at 1, 6 or 15 degrees C in (1) aerobic conditions; (2) 30% CO2 + air; (3) 30% CO2 + N2; and (4) 100% CO2. When samples were held at 1 degree C the organism failed to grow under any of the test conditions, despite marked differences between treatments in spoilage rate and ultimate microflora. At 6 degrees C counts of L. monocytogenes increased ca 10-fold in aerobic conditions before spoilage of the meat, but only when the inoculum culture was incubated at 1 degree C rather than 37 degrees C. In CO2 atmospheres growth of L. monocytogenes was inhibited on meat held at 6 degrees C, especially under 100% CO2. By contrast, storage at 15 degrees C led to spoilage of the meat within 2 d, in all gaseous environments, and listeria levels increased up to 100-fold. Differences in the behaviour of L. monocytogenes on poultry and red meats are discussed.

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