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Quantitative Analysis of Mycoflora on Commercial Domestic Fruits in Japan

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A comprehensive and quantitative analysis of the mycoflora on the surface of commercial fruit was performed. Nine kinds of fruits grown in Japan were tested. Overall fungal counts on the fruits ranged from 3.1 to 6.5 log CFU/g. The mean percentages of the total yeast counts were higher than those of molds in samples of apples, Japanese pears, and strawberries, ranging from 58.5 to 67.0%, and were lower than those of molds in samples of the other six fruits, ranging from 9.8 to 48.3%. Cladosporium was the most frequent fungus and was found in samples of all nine types of fruits, followed by Penicillium found in eight types of fruits. The fungi with the highest total counts in samples of the various fruits were Acremonium in cantaloupe melons (47.6% of the total fungal count), Aspergillus in grapes (32.2%), Aureobasidium in apples (21.3%), blueberries (63.6%), and peaches (33.6%), Cladosporium in strawberries (38.4%), Cryptococcus in Japanese pears (37.6%), Penicillium in mandarins (22.3%), and Sporobolomyces in lemons (26.9%). These results demonstrated that the mycoflora on the surfaces of these fruits mainly consists of common pre- and postharvest inhabitants of the plants or in the environment; fungi that produce mycotoxins or cause market diseases were not prominent in the mycoflora of healthy fruits. These findings suggest fruits should be handled carefully with consideration given to fungal contaminants, including nonpathogenic fungi, to control the quality of fruits and processed fruit products.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Division of Microbiology, National Institute of Health Sciences, 1-18-1 Kamiyoga, Stetagaya-ku, Tokyo 158-8501, Japan 2: School of Marine Science and Technology, Tokai University, 3-20-1 Orido, Shimizu-ku, Shizuoka-shi, Shizuoka 424-8610, Japan 3: Tokyo Metropolitan Industrial Technology, Research Institute, 3-13-10 Nishigaoka, Kita-ku, Tokyo 115-8586, Japan 4: Graduate School of Agricultural and Life Sciences, the University of Tokyo, Yayoi 1-1-1, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8657, Japan 5: Center for Fungal Consultation, 4-8-5 Tsurumichuo, Tsurumi-ku, Yokohama-shi, Kanagawa 230-0051, Japan

Publication date: September 1, 2011

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    The Journal of Food Protection (JFP) is a refereed monthly publication. Each issue contains scientific research and authoritative review articles reporting on a variety of topics in food science pertaining to food safety and quality. The Journal is internationally recognized as the leading publication in the field of food microbiology with a readership exceeding 11,000 scientists from 70 countries. The Journal of Food Protection is indexed in Index Medicus, Current Contents, BIOSIS, PubMed, Medline, and many others.

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