11.3.09

Watch that bacteria

Did you know that unwanted bacterial pathogens may probably be in your veggies? Of course, we all know that, so, please take care when preparing vegetable salads, particularly. Note the following:

1. E.coli 0157:H7 - cabbage, lettuce, cress sprouts, cilantro
2. Salmonella - tomato, alfa alfa sprouts, cabbage, chili, eggplant, spinach, fennel, parsley, strawberries, watermelon, cantaloupes
3. Bacillus cereus - cucumbers, mustard sprouts, soybean sprouts, cress sprouts
4. Clostridium botulinum - cabbage, mushrooms, pepper.
5. Campylobacter jejuni - green onions, lettuce, mushroom, potato, parsley,pepper
6. Listeria monocytogenes - bean sprouts, cabbage, chicory, cucumber, eggplant, salad vegetables, radish, mushrooms, potatoes, tomatoes.
7. Staphylococcus - alfa sprouts, carrot, onions sprouts, radish, parsley

Contamination can occur in the field, during harvesting, post harvest handling, processing, storage or marketing. The most common sources of contamination being:

1. Fecal contamination of soils due to grazing animals or human waste.
2. Contamination from un-composted manure used as fertilizer.
3. Irrigation water contaminated with runoff from areas grazed by animals.
4. Handling by workers who practice poor personal hygiene.
5. Case of wash water in the processing facility.
6. Drip or splash from contaminated floors, drains, overhead pipes or cooling systems.
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