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Incidence of Listeria spp. in Retail Foods in the United Arab Emirates

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Abstract:

A survey of 1,101 samples of retail food items in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) covering dairy products, fresh vegetables, fresh/frozen meat and poultry and a range of "ready-to-eat" meals indicated that the incidence of Listeria monocytogenes was, in general, extremely low. Only in imported frozen chicken was L. monocytogenes detectable with a high degree of frequency, but fresh chicken and semi-processed meats of local origin were also contaminated. No indication of the number of organisms present in any given sample was sought, but as all the suspect foods would have been cooked prior to consumption, risks to the consumer should have been minimal. Listeria was not found in any "ready-to-eat" meals, including those made from chicken. Although Listeria innocua and Listeria welshimeri were detected in some retail foods, these species are normally regarded as being of little consequence with respect to public health.

Keywords: LISTERIA; METHODS; RETAIL FOODS; SURVEY

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Food Control Laboratory, Dubai 2: University of Reading, England

Publication date: January 1, 1995

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