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Bacteriological Quality of Aquacultured Freshwater Fish Portions in Prepackaged Trays Stored at 3°C

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Fresh trout fillets and salmon slices packed in trays were obtained from two multinational chain supermarkets and evaluated for freshness and bacteriological quality immediately after packaging and during storage at 3°C. Initial aerobic counts at 30 and 25°C were significantly (P < 0.05) lower in trout fillets (5.27 ± 0.57 and 4.87 ± 0.80 log CFU/g, respectively) than in salmon slices, where levels in excess of 6 log CFU/g were found. In both products, initial Enterobacteriaceae counts were slightly higher than 3 log CFU/g and increased significantly during shelf life by approximately 3 log CFU/g. Most of the enterobacteria were identified as Citrobacter freundii, Hafnia alvei, and Enterobacter cloacae. On day 0, most probable number (MPN) counts of total and fecal coliforms were not significantly different, numbers of the latter group being approximately 4 MPN/g. Escherichia coli was only detected when fish was spoiled. Although initial presumptive Staphylococcus aureus counts were approximately 3 log CFU/g, only 4 of 84 selected colonies belonged to this species. Neither Salmonella nor antimicrobial residues were detected in any sample. Ethanol content in salmon slices did not significantly ( P increase until they became inedible. Significant correlation (r = +0.72, P < 0.05) was observed between this chemical index and viable counts at 30°C only when salmon slices were inedible. Trout fillets were acceptable for 7 days, and salmon slices showed signs of spoilage after 4 days. Although public health concerns associated with packed trout and salmon appear to be minimal, data on sensory quality, shelf life, and total viable and Enterobacteriaceae counts strongly suggest the need to improve the quality control systems used by European multinational retailers, especially for imported salmon. 0.05)


Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Food Hygiene and Food Technology, Veterinary Faculty, University of León, E-24071-León, Spain

Publication date: September 1, 2001

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