Submitted to: Journal of Food Protection
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/9/2006
Publication Date: 8/13/2006
Citation: Musgrove, M.T., Jones, D.R., Caudill, B.A., Curtis, P.A. 2006. Effects of cool water washing of shell eggs on pathogen detection. Journal of Food Protection, Meeting Abstract. p.116. Interpretive Summary:
Technical Abstract: A commercial study was conducted to determine the effect of cool water washing on shell egg temperature and pathogen detection. Eggs were processed on a single day for three consecutive weeks at both an inline and offline facility. Inline facilities consist of laying houses which are directly connected to the processing facility through a series of belts. Offline facilities require the transport of eggs from off-site laying houses to the processing facility. Three temperature schemes were utilized in commercial dual washer systems: HH = 48.9C, 48.9C; HC = 48.9C, 23.9C; and CC = 23.9C, 23.9C. HH eggs maintained the highest surface temperature (26.25C inline, 20.25C offline, and 23.25C combined, P < 0.05). The lowest temperatures were found in the CC eggs (21.25C inline, 17.25C offline, and 19.25C combined). The frequency of Enterobacteriaceae detection in shell and membrane emulsions was greatest for CC eggs (P < 0.05 for inline and combined). There was no difference in Enterobacteriaceae detection for the offline facility. Salmonella was detected in 3 of 384 samples from the inline facility. The isolates were found in HC (2) and CC (1) shell emulsions. Two of 384 samples were positive for Campylobacter from the inline facility (CC). Three wash water samples were positive for Listeria in the offline facility (1 HC, 2 CC). No pathogens were detected in egg contents during this study. The results of this study indicate that warm followed by cool water washing has the potential of decreasing egg temperature while maintaining surface microbiology at an acceptable level.