1Mérieux NutriSciences, 3600 Eagle Nest Drive, Crete, Illinois 60417; and
2American Frozen Food Institute, 2000 Corporate Ridge, Suite 1000, McLean, Virginia 22102, USA
*Author for correspondence. Tel: 708-367-4699; Fax: 708-367-0701; E-mail: Erdogan.Ceylan@mxns.com.
Thermal inactivation of Listeria monocytogenes and Salmonella was evaluated on peas, spinach, broccoli, potatoes, and carrots that were treated with hot water and steam. One gram-positive bacterium, L. monocytogenes, and one gram-negative bacterium, Salmonella, were selected as pertinent human pathogens for evaluation. Samples were inoculated with a composite of five strains each of L. monocytogenes and Salmonella to achieve approximately 108 to 109 CFU/g. Inoculated samples were treated with hot water at 85 and 87.8°C and with steam at 85 and 96.7°C for up to 3.5 min. A greater than 5-log reduction of L. monocytogenes and Salmonella was achieved on all products within 0.5 min by hot water blanching at 85 and 87.8°C. Steam blanching at 85°C reduced Salmonella populations by greater than 5 log on spinach and peas within 2 min and on carrots and broccoli within 3.5 min. Populations of Salmonella were reduced by more than 5 log within 1 min on carrot, spinach, and broccoli and within 2 min on peas by steam blanching at 96.7°C. Steam blanching at 85°C reduced L. monocytogenes populations by more than 5 log on carrots and spinach within 2 min and on broccoli and peas within 3.5 min. L. monocytogenes populations were reduced more than 5 log within 1 min on carrot, spinach, peas and broccoli by steam blanching at 96.7°C. Longer treatment times and higher temperatures were required for steam-blanched samples than for samples blanched with hot water. Results suggest that hot water and steam blanching practices commonly used by the frozen vegetable industry will achieve the desired 5-log lethality of L. monocytogenes and Salmonella and will enhance microbiological safety prior to freezing.
Received: November 28, 2016; Accepted: April 30, 2017; Published: August 14, 2017