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Enumeration of Campylobacter and Salmonella on chicken packs

TeckLok Wong (Food Safety Group, Institute of Environmental Science and Research Ltd, Christchurch Science Centre, Christchurch, New Zealand)
Rosemary Janet Whyte (Food Safety Group, Institute of Environmental Science and Research Ltd, Christchurch Science Centre, Christchurch, New Zealand)
Angela Joyce Cornelius (Food Safety Group, Institute of Environmental Science and Research Ltd, Christchurch Science Centre, Christchurch, New Zealand)
John Andrew Hudson (Food Safety Group, Institute of Environmental Science and Research Ltd, Christchurch Science Centre, Christchurch, New Zealand)

British Food Journal

ISSN: 0007-070X

Article publication date: 1 September 2004

Abstract

Transmission routes that may contribute to the overall picture of campylobacteriosis and salmonellosis were explored by analysing the outside surfaces of 300 retail raw chicken packs for prevalence and enumeration of Campylobacter using a MPN/PCR assay and Salmonella using a MPN/visual immunoassay procedure. The surfaces of 72 packs (24.0 per cent) were externally contaminated with C. jejuni; 32 with counts of <6 MPN/pack and the remaining 40 with counts ranging from 6 to >2,200 MPN/pack. One whole chicken sample (0.3 per cent) was contaminated with S. Tennessee at <6 MPN/pack. The surfaces of offal packs were most contaminated with Campylobacter, with 18 per cent having a count of ≥100 MPN/pack in comparison with chicken portion packs (4/200, 2 per cent) and whole bird packs (1/50, 2 per cent). These observations suggest that packs could be a source of cross‐contamination, however, the contribution of this outer surface contamination pathway to foodborne illness can only be properly determined by development of a validated risk assessment model.

Keywords

Citation

Wong, T., Janet Whyte, R., Joyce Cornelius, A. and Hudson, J.A. (2004), "Enumeration of Campylobacter and Salmonella on chicken packs", British Food Journal, Vol. 106 No. 9, pp. 651-662. https://doi.org/10.1108/00070700410558184

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited