Prevalence of Arcobacter spp. in Raw Milk and Retail Raw Meats in Northern Ireland

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Abstract:

A 1-year study was undertaken to determine the prevalence of Arcobacter spp. in raw milk and retail raw meats on sale in Northern Ireland. Retail raw poultry samples (n = 94), pork samples (n = 101), and beef samples (n = 108) were obtained from supermarkets in Northern Ireland, and raw milk samples (n = 101) were kindly provided by the Milk Research Laboratory, Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, Belfast, Northern Ireland. Presumptive arcobacters were identified by previously described genus-specific and species-specific PCR assays. Arcobacter spp. were found to be common contaminants of retail raw meats and raw milk in Northern Ireland. Poultry meat (62%) had the highest prevalence, but frequent isolations were made from pork (35%), beef (34%), and raw milk (46%). Arcobacter butzleri was the predominant species isolated from retail raw meats and was the only species isolated from raw milk samples. Arcobacter cryaerophilus was detected less frequently, and Arcobacter skirrowii was detected only as a cocontaminant. To our knowledge, this is the first report of Arcobacter spp. prevalence in a diverse range of products of animal origin in Northern Ireland.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Food Science Department, The Queen's University of Belfast, Newforge Lane, Belfast, Northern Ireland BT9 5PX 2: Food Science Department, The Queen's University of Belfast, Newforge Lane, Belfast, Northern Ireland BT9 5PX; The Danish Food and Veterinary Research Institute, 27 Bülowsvej, Copenhagen V, Denmark DK-1790 3: Food Science Department, The Queen's University of Belfast, Newforge Lane, Belfast, Northern Ireland BT9 5PX; Food Microbiology Branch, Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, Newforge Lane, Belfast, Northern Ireland BT9 5PX

Publication date: August 1, 2006

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