Microbiological analysis of fresh fruits & vegetables & effect of anti-microbial agents on microbial load
Patel, Sonali and Joshi, Pradnya (2008) Microbiological analysis of fresh fruits & vegetables & effect of anti-microbial agents on microbial load. PhD thesis, University of Mumbai.
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Fresh vegetables & fruits are exposed to potential microbial contamination. Consumer demand is to use fresh vegetables & fruits which are bacteriologically safe. Bacteriological survey of 45 samples of fresh vegetables & fruits, (15 collected from 3 different sources) was done. Samples were analyzed to study the density of micro-organisms by standard plate count (SPC), yeast & mould count (YMC), coliform counts (CC). The high contamination & high number of pathogens on the surface of fresh vegetables & fruits in case of local market samples (log 9-10 cfu/ml) as compared to super market samples (log 5-6 cfu/ml). Various pathogens were identified from the surface of these samples. Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas were found to be the pre-dominant species in most of the samples. 5 different anti-microbial agents – Hydrogen Peroxide, Calcium Chloride, Benzoic Acid, Citric Acid, Ethanol were studied to decrease the microbial load of these samples. Samples rinsed with these solutions for 5mins. & washed with sterile distilled water; showed 40-80 % reduction in total number of organisms. Hydrogen Peroxide was found to be the most effective, where 80 % samples showed more reduction in total number of organisms. Results indicated that the microbial load in local market samples was very high as compared to super market & Hydrogen Peroxide can be used as rinsing agent to improve the quality of fresh vegetables & fruits.
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