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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item Koenigsfeld, Marie
item Rasmussen, Mark
item Casey, Thomas

Submitted to: American Society for Microbiology Branch Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/15/1999
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: This study investigated the bacteriocidal properties of acidified nitrite solutions. The applications of this study could be used as an alternative carcass wash used in meat processing plants. Current washing solutions used by industry, such as acetic acid, are limited in their bacteriocidal activity. A more effective carcass wash would decrease the incidence of contamination and improve the quality of meat products. Nitrites have long been added to cured meats such as hot dogs and sausages as a preservative and color enhancer. In this study, we have combined the antibacterial properties of nitrite and low pH to produce a more potent disinfectant solution. Experiments were conducted to study the effect that acidified nitrite solutions would have upon E. coli O157:H7. A culture of E. coli O157:H7 strain 3081 was suspended in 2.5 mM, pH 2-3 acidified nitrite solutions. Aliquots were collected at 0, 0.5, and 1 hr and enumerated by overnight incubation on Trypticase Soy Agar plates. The results showed a 6-log decrease per mL or, in some cases, undetectable levels of bacterial growth. The addition of nitrite augmented the bacteriocidal activity of the acidic solution when compared to acid solutions without nitrite. The effects of different acids also were examined. Lactic acid exhibited better results from acetic acid, which performed better than hydrochloric acid. The results outline the bacteriocidal effects of acidified nitrite solutions. Our future direction is the study of acidified nitrite in practice as a carcass wash during meat processing.

Last Modified: 07/26/2017
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