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Reduction by gaseous ozone of Salmonella and microbial flora associated with fresh-cut cantaloupe

AuthorsSelma, María Victoria CSIC ORCID ; Ibáñez, Ana María; Cantwell, Marita; Suslow, Trevor
Sensory quality
Foodborne pathogens
Food safety
Issue Date23-Feb-2008
CitationFood Microbiology 25(4): 558-565 (2008)
AbstractThis research investigates the efficacy of gaseous ozone, applied under partial vacuum in a controlled reaction chamber, for the elimination of Salmonella inoculated on melon rind. The performance of high dose, short duration treatment with gaseous ozone, in this pilot system, on the microbial and sensory quality of fresh-cut cantaloupes was also evaluated. Gaseous ozone (10,000 ppm for 30 min under vacuum) reduced viable, recoverable Salmonella from inoculated physiologically mature non-ripe and ripe melons with a maximum reduction of 4.2 and 2.8 log CFU/rind-disk (12.6 cm2), respectively. The efficacy of ozone exposure was influenced by carrier matrix. Salmonella adhering to cantaloupe was more resistant to ozone treatment when suspended in skim-milk powder before aqueous inoculation to the rind. This indicated that organic matter interferes with the contact efficiency and resultant antimicrobial activity of gaseous ozone applied as a surface disinfectant. Conversely, in the absence of an organic carrier, Salmonella viability loss was greater on dry exocarp surfaces than in the wetted surfaces, during ozone treatment, achieving reductions of 2.8 and 1.4 initial log CFU/rind-disk, respectively. Gaseous ozone treatment of 5000 and 20,000 ppm for 30 min reduced total coliforms, Pseudomonas fluorescens, yeast and lactic acid bacteria recovery from fresh-cut cantaloupe. A dose Ct-value (concentration × exposure time) of 600,000 ppm min achieved maximal log CFU/melon-cube reduction, under the test conditions. Finally, fresh-cut cantaloupe treated with gaseous ozone, maintained an acceptable visual quality, aroma and firmness during 7-day storage at 5 °C. Conclusions derived from this study illustrate that gaseous ozone is an effective option to risk reduction and spoilage control of fresh and fresh-cut melon. Moreover, depending on the timing of contamination and post-contamination conditions, rapid drying combined with gaseous ozone exposure may be successful as combined or sequential disinfection steps to minimize persistence of Salmonella on the surface of cantaloupe melons and transference during fresh-cut processing of home preparation. Based on these results, greater efficacy would be anticipated with mature but non-ripe melons while ripe tissues reduce the efficacy of these gaseous ozone treatments, potentially by oxidative reaction with soluble refractive solids.
Description8 pages, 3 figures, 1 table.
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Appears in Collections:(CEBAS) Artículos

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