Research – Salmonella Evolves: New Dangerous Strains Pose Increased Risk for Food Producers, Manufacturers, and the Patrons Who Consume Their Products

Food Poisoning News

Salmonella Evolves: New Dangerous Strains Pose Increased Risk for Food Producers, Manufacturers, and the Patrons Who Consume The Food They Produce

Scientists at the University of Delaware have found new strains of Salmonella that are not able to be washed off of infected plants, such as leafy greens and other vegetables. By entering through a plants stomates, the microscopic holes in plant’s leafs that open and close during the gas exchange process, the Salmonella bacteria evades the plants immune system response and is able to freely infect the plant. Typically, plant bacteria and fungi infect plants because they have the enzyme necessary to open closed stomates. Salmonella is a bacterial disease that typically infects humans, not plants, and does not have the enzyme necessary to open stomates.  Salmonella usually only infects plants topically during growing and harvesting, often occurring during the picking and transportation process from farms to stores.  Most times the contamination of these fruits and vegetables is through direct contact with infected feces or water infected with feces. Because the Salmonella is only on the plant’s surface, the surface level infection can be removed by washing plants with soap and water, effectively ejecting the Salmonella bacteria from the plant and making it safe to eat

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