The aim of this study is to analyze and document the microbiological safety and quality of ready-to-eat foods in hospital and university canteens in Hanoi, Vietnam. A total of 420 ready-to-eat food products from 21 canteens were sampled in July 2018 and May 2019. The ratio of samples exceeding the unsatisfactory level for Total Plate Count (TPC) was 31%. Escherichia coli, Listeria and Staphylococcus aureus were detected in 35 (8.3%), 99 (24%), 46 (11%) samples, with 3%, 10% and 0% exceeding the unsatisfactory level, respectively. The Total Plate Count (TPC), Listeria, Bacillus cereus, E. coli, S. aureus ranged from below detection limit to 5×10 9 , 4.6×10 5 , 6.2×10 3 , 3.4×10 3 , 7.6×10 3 CFU/g, respectively. Listeria monocytogenes was isolated from 3/420 samples (0.7%). In addition, there were 21 out of 410 samples (5%) contaminated with Salmonella. Overall, our data indicate frequent problems with the microbiological quality and safety of these canteen foods in Hanoi, and provide a baseline measurement that will allow environmental health ofﬁcers and food microbiologists to develop targeted intervention strategies to reduce the economical and public health risk associated with these foods.
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