Research – Microbiological Quality of Nuts, Dried and Candied Fruits, Including the Prevalence of Cronobacter spp.

MDPI

Cronobacter genus bacteria are food-borne pathogens. Foods contaminated with Cronobacter spp. may pose a risk to infants or immunocompromised adults. The aim of this study was to determine the microbiological quality of nuts, seeds and dried fruits with special emphasis on the occurrence of Cronobacter spp. Analyses were carried out on 64 samples of commercial nuts (20 samples), dried fruits (24), candied fruits (8), seeds (4), and mixes of seeds, dried fruits and nuts (8). The samples were tested for the total plate count of bacteria (TPC), counts of yeasts and molds, and the occurrence of Cronobacter spp. Cronobacter isolates were identified and differentiated by PCR-RFLP (Polymerase Chain Reaction – Restriction Fragments Length Polymorphism) and RAPD-PCR (Random Amplified Polymorphic DNA by PCR) analysis. TPC, and yeasts and molds were not detected in 0.1 g of 23.4%, 89.1%, and 32.8% of the analyzed samples. In the remaining samples, TPC were in the range of 1.2–5.3 log CFU g−1. The presence/absence of Cronobacter species was detected in 12 (18.8%) samples of: nuts (10 samples), and mixes (2 samples). The 12 strains of Cronobacter spp. included: C. sakazakii (3 strains), C. malonaticus (5), and C. turicensis (4). The results of this study contribute to the determination of the presence and species identification of Cronobacter spp. in products of plant origin intended for direct consumption. View Full-Text

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