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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: MICROBIAL INTERACTIONS AND INTERVENTIONS TO REDUCE TRANSMISSION OF FOODBORNE PATHOGENS THROUGH POULTRY

Location: Food and Feed Safety Research

Title: Effect of selected modified atmosphere packaging on Campylobacter survival in raw poultry

Authors
item Byrd, James
item Sams, Alan -
item Hargis, Billy -
item Caldwell, David -

Submitted to: Poultry Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: February 4, 2011
Publication Date: May 23, 2011
Repository URL: http://handle.nal.usda.gov/10113/57263
Citation: Byrd II, J.A., Sams, A.R., Hargis, B.M., Caldwell, D.J. 2011. Effect of selected modified atmosphere packaging on Campylobacter survival in raw poultry. Poultry Science. 90:1324-1328.

Interpretive Summary: Campylobacter are important foodborne pathogens that cause potentially fatal disease in humans. This bacteria can be found on poultry and poultry products. Little is known about the effect of storage environment on the survival of Campylobacter on raw poultry. The current study evaluated different packaging of poultry products and how these gases affect foodborne bacteria that cause the product to spoil. These gases included pure oxygen, carbon dioxide, and air packaged with the poultry products for up to 14 days. These results demonstrate that packaging poultry products in oxygen may reduce Campylobacter concentrations when compared to other gases evaluated, which could help farmers and packing plant operators produce safer poultry products for human consumption.

Technical Abstract: Most current research on Campylobacter has focused on preharvest or processing plant cross contamination. Little is known about the effect of storage environment on the survival of Campylobacter on raw poultry. We evaluated the effects of modified storage atmosphere on the survival of naturally-occurring Campylobacter on raw poultry. Broiler carcasses (560) were collected as they exited the chiller in 2 commercial processing plants and were sampled for the detection of Campylobacter, E. coli, psychrophiles, and total aerobes at 0 and 14 days of refrigerated (2C) storage. Gases evaluated were air, 100% oxygen, 100% carbon dioxide, and a standard poultry modified atmosphere-packaging mixture (MAP; 5% 02 + 10% CO2 + 85% N). All carcasses were sampled by the whole carcass rinse. The rinse fluid was recovered, pooled from 5 individual rinses, and serial dilutions made for examination of Campylobacter (campy-cefex, 42C, 48h), E. coli (m-endol, 37C, 24h), psychrophiles (plate count agar, 4C, 7d), and total aerobic bacterial populations (plate count agar, 37C, 24h). Campylobacter counts for all treatments were reduced during the 14 d storage period, but the 100% oxygen treatment caused a significantly (p<.05) greater reduction than the other gas treatments. For the psychrophiles, storage in air resulted in the greatest growth after 14 days, with reduced psychrophilic growth allowed by either oxygen or MAP (not different from each other). Of the treatments evaluated, CO2 allowed the least growth of psychrophiles. Proliferation of E. coli and aerobes was the greatest when packaged in air after 14d, while CO2 and O2 packaging resulted in the least growth. These data suggest that O2 may be a preferred environment, which actually reduced Campylobacter recovery, and retarded psychrophiles and aerobe recovery following storage.

Last Modified: 7/28/2014
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