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Frequency and Behavior of Salmonella and Escherichia coli on Whole and Sliced Jalapeño and Serrano Peppers

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Abstract:

The frequencies of coliform bacteria (CB), thermotolerant coliforms (TC), Escherichia coli, and Salmonella were determined for jalapeño and serrano peppers. In addition, the behavior of four serotypes of Salmonella and three E. coli strains on whole and sliced jalapeño and serrano peppers as well as in blended sauce at 25 ± 2°C and 3 to 5°C was investigated. Chili peppers were collected from markets in the city of Pachuca, Hidalgo, Mexico. CB, TC, E. coli, and Salmonella were detected on serrano peppers in 100, 90, 50, and 10 % of the samples, and on jalapeño peppers in 100, 86, 32, and 12 % of the samples. Concentrations of CB ranged from 3.8 to 7.9 log CFU per serrano sample and from 5.3 to 8.2 log CFU per jalapeño sample, whereas concentrations of TC and E. coli were between < 3 and 1,100 most probable number per serrano and jalapeño samples. On whole serrano and jalapeño peppers stored at 25 ± 2°C or 3 to 5°C, no growth was observed for rifampin-resistant strains of Salmonella and E. coli. After 6 days at 25 ± 2°C, the tested Salmonella serotypes and E. coli strains had decreased from an initial inoculum level of 5 log CFU to 1 and 2.5 log on serrano and jalapeño peppers, respectively, and at 3 to 5°C they decreased to approximately 1.8 and 1.2 log, respectively, on serrano and jalapeño. Both the Salmonella serotypes and E. coli grew on sliced chili peppers and in blended sauce; after 24 h at 25 ± 2°C, both bacteria types had grown to approximately 4 and 5 log CFU on pepper slices and in sauce, respectively. At 3 to 5°C the bacterial growth was inhibited.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4315/0362-028X.JFP-10-398

Affiliations: 1: Centro de Investigaciones Químicas, Instituto de Ciencias Básicas e Ingeniería, Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Hidalgo, Centro Universitario, Carretera Pachuca-Tulancingo km 4.5, Mineral de la Reforma, Hidalgo, C.P. 42183, México. jcastro@uaeh.edu.mx 2: Centro de Investigaciones Químicas, Instituto de Ciencias Básicas e Ingeniería, Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Hidalgo, Centro Universitario, Carretera Pachuca-Tulancingo km 4.5, Mineral de la Reforma, Hidalgo, C.P. 42183, México 3: Instituto de Ciencias Agropecuarias, Rancho Universitario, Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Hidalgo, Avenida Universidad km 1, Ex Hacienda Aquetzalpa, Apartado Postal no. 32, Tulancingo, Hidalgo, México 4: Centro de Investigaciones Químicas, Instituto de Ciencias Básicas e Ingeniería, Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Hidalgo, Centro Universitario, Carretera Pachuca-Tulancingo km 4.5, Mineral de la Reforma, Hidalgo, C.P. 42183, México 5: Centro de Investigaciones Químicas, Instituto de Ciencias Básicas e Ingeniería, Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Hidalgo, Centro Universitario, Carretera Pachuca-Tulancingo km 4.5, Mineral de la Reforma, Hidalgo, C.P. 42183, México 6: Laboratorio de Microbiología Sanitaria, Centro Universitario de Ciencias Exactas e Ingenierías, Universidad de Guadalajara, Marcelino García Barragán 1451, Guadalajara 44430, México

Publication date: June 1, 2011

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