Detection and enumeration of Enteric bacteria associated with food handlers and surfaces of food manufacturing industry located in Hub city, Pakistan
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Foodborne microorganisms harbor and adheres itself to the food material and surrounding surfaces for a long time and influence the food quality and consumers health. Among these microbes the presence of Enteric indicator bacteria in food premises confers the indication of entero-pathogens, i.e. E. coli, Salmonella, Shigella and Campylobacters that could cause severe systemic infections in consumers. In this study, the hygienic status of confectionery and supplementary food processing facility was evaluated. A total of 10497 examinations were performed on 3499 swab samples collected from food premises and handlers for the analysis of Enteric indicator bacteria. From swabs, 1277 (12.2%) isolates were identified in which Enterobacteriaceae were found with higher frequency 604 (47.3%) followed by Coliforms 293 (30.8%) and Escherichia coli 280 (21.9%) respectively. The mean count (CFU/cm2) was found maximum for plain surfaces (floors, walls and door), while the lowest was for equipment and machinery. Overall isolates percent prevalence was determined where Enterobacteriaceae were 47%, Coliforms 31% and Escherichia coli 22%. Majority of the floor surfaces were highly contaminated, where washing and sanitation practices were observed to be inappropriate. Worker hygiene status was lacking essential food safety and hygiene standards. In general, the Enteric bacteria were found with higher ratio, that could affect the food quality and quantity both to a greater extent with some influences on consumers health.
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- Department of Biotechnology / Microbiology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Karachi, Karachi 75270, Pakistan
- Microbiology Laboratories, Qarshi Research International (Pvt.) Ltd., Hattar, Haripur, Pakistan
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