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  • Detection and Genotyping of Leuconostoc spp. in a Sausage Processing Plant.

Detection and Genotyping of Leuconostoc spp. in a Sausage Processing Plant.

Journal of food protection (2015-11-29)
J J Padilla-Frausto, L G Cepeda-Marquez, L M Salgado, M H Iturriaga, S M Arvizu-Medrano
ABSTRACT

Some Leuconostoc spp. have the ability to produce slime and undesirable compounds in cooked sausage. The objectives of this research were to identify Leuconostoc sources in a Vienna-type sausage processing plant and to evaluate the genetic diversity of the isolated strains. Three hundred and two samples of sausage batter, sausages during processing, spoiled sausage, equipment surfaces, chilling brine, workers' gloves and aprons, and used casings were collected (March to November 2008 and February to April 2010) from a sausage processing plant. Lactic acid bacteria (LAB) were quantified, and Leuconostoc were detected using PCR. Strains were isolated and identified in Leuconostoc-positive samples. Leuconostoc strains were genotyped using randomly amplified polymorphic DNA and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis. LAB content of nonspoiled and spoiled sausage ranged from <0.8 to 4.4 log CFU/g and from 4.9 to 8.3 log CFU/g, respectively. LAB levels on equipment surfaces ranged from <1.3 to 4.8 log CFU/100 cm(2). Leuconostoc was detected in 35% of the samples, and 88 Leuconostoc spp. strains were isolated and genotyped. The main Leuconostoc spp. isolated were L. mesenteroides (37 genotypes), L. fallax (29 genotypes), and L. lactis (6 genotypes). Some strains of Leuconostoc isolated from equipment surfaces and sausages showed the same genotype. One L. lactis genotype included strains isolated from spoiled sausages analyzed in April 2008 and March to April 2010. Equipment and conveyor belts constitute Leuconostoc contamination sources. Leuconostoc persistence in the sausage processing environment and in the final product suggests the existence of microbial reservoirs, possibly on equipment surfaces.

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