Development and Validation of a Mathematical Model for Growth of Pathogens in Cut Melons
Abstract:Many outbreaks of foodborne illness associated with the consumption of fresh-cut melons have been reported. The objective of our research was to develop a mathematical model that predicts the growth rate of Salmonella on fresh-cut cantaloupe over a range of storage temperatures and to validate that model by using Salmonella and Escherichia coli O157:H7 on cantaloupe, honeydew, and watermelon, using both new data and data from the published studies. The growth of Salmonella on honeydew and watermelon and E. coli O157:H7 on cantaloupe, honeydew, and watermelon was monitored at temperatures of 4 to 25°C. The Ratkowsky (or square-root model) was used to describe Salmonella growth on cantaloupe as a function of storage temperature. Our results show that the levels of Salmonella on fresh-cut cantaloupe with an initial load of 3 log CFU/g can reach over 7 log CFU/g at 25°C within 24 h. No growth was observed at 4°C. A linear correlation was observed between the square root of Salmonella growth rate and temperature, such that √growth rate = 0.026 × (T – 5.613), R 2 = 0.9779. The model was generally suitable for predicting the growth of both Salmonella and E. coli O157:H7 on cantaloupe, honeydew, and watermelon, for both new data and data from the published literature. When compared with existing models for growth of Salmonella, the new model predicts a theoretic minimum growth temperature similar to the ComBase Predictive Models and Pathogen Modeling Program models but lower than other food-specific models. The ComBase Prediction Models results are very similar to the model developed in this study. Our research confirms that Salmonella can grow quickly and reach high concentrations when cut cantaloupe is stored at ambient temperatures, without visual signs of spoilage. Our model provides a fast and cost-effective method to estimate the effects of storage temperature on fresh-cut melon safety and could also be used in subsequent quantitative microbial risk assessments.
Document Type: Research Article
Affiliations: 1: Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, 65 Dudley Road, New Brunswick, New Jersey 08901, USA 2: Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, Citrus Research and Education Center, University of Florida, 700 Experiment Station Road, Lake Alfred, Florida 33850, USA 3: Department of Food Science and Technology, University of California, One Shields Avenue, Davis, California 95616-8598, USA
Publication date: June 1, 2013
- IAFP Members with personal subscriptions to JFP Online: To access full-text JFP or JMFT articles, you must sign-in in the upper-right corner using your Ingenta sign-in details (your IAFP Member Login does not apply to this website). 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.
Print and online subscriptions are available to IAFP Members and institutional subscribers. IAFP Members with a subscription to JFP Online will have access to all available JFP and JMFT content. Online visitors who are not IAFP Members or journal subscribers will be charged on a pay-per-view basis. Membership and subscription information is available at www.foodprotection.org.
- Information for Authors
- Submit a Paper
- Subscribe to this Title
- Membership Information
- Information for Advertisers
- ingentaconnect is not responsible for the content or availability of external websites