Skip to main content
ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Albany, California » Western Regional Research Center » Healthy Processed Foods Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #254753

Title: Antimicrobial edible apple films inactivate antibiotic resistant and susceptible Campylobacter jejuni strains on chicken breast

item MILD, RITA - University Of Arizona
item JOENS, LYNN - University Of Arizona
item Friedman, Mendel
item Olsen, Carl
item McHugh, Tara
item RAVISHANKAR, SADHANA - Arizona State University

Submitted to: Journal of Food Science
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 1/3/2010
Publication Date: 3/16/2011
Citation: Mild, R.M., Joens, L., Friedman, M., Olsen, C.W., Mchugh, T.H., Ravishankar, S. 2011. Antimicrobial edible apple films inactivate antibiotic resistant and susceptible Campylobacter jejuni strains on chicken breast. Journal of Food Science. 76: M163–M168. doi: 10.1111/j.1750-3841.2011.02065.x.

Interpretive Summary: According to data published by the Center of Disease Control in Atlanta, Campylobacter is the leading cause of foodborne bacterial illness worldwide. As part of an effort designed to develop antimicrobial food formulations that will protect both the food and the consumer against pathogenic bacteria and bacterial toxins, we participated in a collaborative study with the Department of Veterinary Science and Microbiology, University of Arizona, Tucson on the use of antimicrobial apple-based film wrappings developed in this laboratory to inactivate pathogenic antibiotic-resistant Campylobacter jejuni bacteria on commercial poultry surfaces. Apple films on chicken containing carvacrol, the main ingredient of oregano oil, and cinnamaldehyde, the main ingredient of cinnamon oil, showed strong bactericidal activity against nonresistant and antibiotic-resistant Campylobacter strains. The results of the present study suggest that edible films may be a useful addition to current decontamination procedures and packaging for reduction of residual contamination of Campylobacter on the surface of retail poultry. The use of plant antimicrobials also offers a cost-effective alternative to traditional antibiotics and preservatives that may contribute to persistent bacterial resistance. They also meet increased consumer demand for natural, fresh, flavorful food products.

Technical Abstract: Campylobacter jejuni is the leading cause of bacterial diarrheal illness worldwide. Many strains are now becoming multi-drug resistant. To help overcome this problem, apple-based edible films containing carvacrol and cinnamaldehyde were evaluated for their effectiveness against antibiotic resistant and susceptible C. jejuni strains on chicken. Chicken samples inoculated with D28a and H2a (resistant strains) and A24a (a sensitive strain) were wrapped in apple films treated with cinnamaldehyde and carvacrol at concentrations of 0.5, 1.5, and 3%, and incubated at 4 °C and 23 °C for 72 h. Immediately after wrapping and at 72 h, samples were stomached, diluted, and plated for enumeration of survivors. The antimicrobial films exhibited dose and temperature dependent bactericidal activity against both resistant and sensitive strains of C. jejuni. Films with 1.5 and 3% cinnamaldehyde reduced the populations of all three strains to below detection (<10 CFU/g) at 23 °C at 72 h. At 4 °C, the reductions were lower, ranging from 1 log to below detection for films with 1.5 and 3% cinnamaldehyde and up to 2 logs with 0.5% cinnamaldehyde. Films with 3% carvacrol reduced the populations of A24a and H2a to below detection and that of D28a by about 4 logs at 23 °C and 72 hrs. At 4 °C and 3% carvacrol, reductions were about 1.5 logs for all three strains. The reductions ranged from about 1.5-4.0 logs and 0.7-2.8 logs with 1.5 and 0.5% carvacrol, respectively. The antimicrobial films with cinnamaldehyde were more effective than carvacrol-containing films. Reductions at 23 °C were greater than at 4 °C. Antimicrobial apple films have the potential to reduce C. jejuni populations on chicken and campylobacteriosis.