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Evaluation of Consumable Household Products for Decontaminating Retail Skinless, Boneless Chicken Breasts

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The effect of 15 consumable products, including juices, wines, and vinegar, used as rinsing agents on microbial loads of retail skinless, boneless chicken breasts was evaluated in two studies. Ten breasts were rinsed for 1 min with each solution. Samples were swabbed before and after rinsing with a cellulose sponge and evaluated for total aerobic (APC), total coliform (TCC), and generic Escherichia coli counts by Petrifilm methods. No differences were found in initial APC or TCC in either study, with initial mean APC ranging from 5.30 to 7.05 log CFU/cm2 and initial mean TCC ranging from 2.21 to 3.36 log CFU/cm2. In study 1, the APC for breasts rinsed with distilled white vinegar (3.22 log CFU/cm2) was lower than for those rinsed with all other solutions except cranberry juice cocktail (3.86 log CFU/cm2). The TCC for breasts rinsed with distilled white vinegar (0.00 log CFU/cm2) and cranberry juice cocktail (0.20 log CFU/cm2) were lower than those for all other solutions except 10% NaCl (0.43 log CFU/cm2) and 10% NaHCO3 (0.48 log CFU/cm2). In study 2, APC values for breasts rinsed with red wine (5.29 log CFU/cm2) and white wine (5.32 log CFU/cm2) were lower than for breasts rinsed with the other three solutions. The TCC after rinsing with chicken broth (4.48 log CFU/cm2) was higher than for all other solutions except Italian dressing. Although distilled white vinegar was the most effective rinsing agent, all solutions produced lower counts after rinsing, indicating that consumers could use rinsing to remove microorganisms from chicken breast surfaces prior to cooking.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2005-03-01

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