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Detection of Listeria species in fresh produces samples from different retail shops in Canterbury, New Zealand

Zhu, Qi
Gooneratne, Sarojith R.
Hussain, Malik
Journal Article
Fields of Research
ANZSRC::0908 Food Sciences , ANZSRC::150401 Food and Hospitality Services , ANZSRC::090803 Food Nutritional Balance
Aim: This study investigates the prevalence of Listeria spp. in fresh produce sold in the Canterbury region of New Zealand. Background: L. monocytogenes is a common pathogenic bacterium that can be present and grow on fresh produce. Therefore, systematic risk assessment is needed to avoid a food safety scare. Results: Microbiological analysis to detect Listeria spp. in fresh produce samples showed that lettuce from the retail shops had the highest level (4.2 log cfu/g) >cucumber (3.2 log cfu/g) >cabbage (2.5 log cfu/g) >carrot (nil). In terms of Listeria prevalence, carrot samples had the lowest Listeria spp. load (<1.05 log cfu/g) and lettuce samples had the highest (>4 log cfu/g). None of the samples showed a positive result for L. monocytogenes presence. Conclusion: Although the L. monocytogenes was not detected in this study, the potential hazard for contaminating fresh produce by this organism still exist due to high prevalence of Listeria spp.
©2016 Hussain MA. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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