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Survival and Growth of Campylobacter jejuni after Artificial Inoculation onto Chicken Skin as a Function of Temperature and Packaging Conditions

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Campylobacter jejuni is one of the major causes of food poisoning in humans. C. jejuni is also widespread in food animals, and meat and meat products derived from food animals are the most common vector of bacterial transmission to humans. To determine the role of packing and storage conditions on the replication of C. jejuni on chicken, the virulent strain C. jejuni 81116 was artificially inoculated onto chicken skin pieces (1 cm2) and stored at different temperatures and under various packaging conditions. C. jejuni 81116 remained viable at -20 and -70°C and was able to replicate at 4°C and at ambient room temperature. C. jejuni 81116 was also inoculated onto chicken skin and subjected to repeated freeze thawing and the viability of the inoculum was quantified. C. jejuni 81116 could withstand repeated freeze thawing similar to that which may occur in the domestic home. Under all freezing conditions, C. jejuni 81116 retained a high level of viability and quickly replicated to levels which exceeded Australian food authorities' permitted bacteria level on raw food products after the sample was thawed.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Applied Biology and Biotechnology, RMIT University, GPO Box 2476V, Melbourne, Victoria 3001, Australia

Publication date: December 1, 1998

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