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A Survey of Microbial Contamination of Food Contact Surfaces at Broiler Slaughter Plants in Taiwan

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Microbial contamination levels at broiler slaughter plants were investigated at three major slaughter plants in Taiwan during the summer and winter. The microbial contamination levels in chicken carcasses and on food contact surfaces were examined using the swab method. The results indicated that the bacterial counts were affected by the slaughter processing plant, processes, and season (P < 0.05). The bacterial counts on food contact surfaces of the equipment before operation were not significantly lower than those after processing. Regardless of the bacterial type, bacterial counts of chicken carcasses generally decreased from the scalding step to the washing step before evisceration and then increased. The cleaning procedures for food contact surfaces should be evaluated, and special attention should be given to utensils used during processing, such as gloves, baskets, and hand tools.

Document Type: Short Communication

Affiliations: 1: Food Safety Institute International, 14F-12, No. 189, Section 2, Keelung Road, Taipei, Taiwan 2: Food Science and Nutrition Department, Shih-Thien University, No. 70 Da-Tsi Road, Taipei, Taiwan 3: Animal Science Department, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan

Publication date: December 1, 2004

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