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Front. Sustain. Food Syst. | doi: 10.3389/fsufs.2018.00078

Reducing Transfer of Salmonella and Aerobic Mesophilic Bacteria on Melon Rinds Surfaces to Fresh Juice by Washing with Chlorine: Effect of Waiting Period Before Refrigeration of Prepared Juice

 Dike Ukuku1*, Surdarsan Mukhopadhyay2 and Modesto Olanya2
  • 1Beltsville Agricultural Research Center, Agricultural Research Service (USDA), United States
  • 2United States Department of Agriculture, United States

Cantaloupes, honeydew melons and watermelons inoculated with Salmonella cocktail at 4.5 log10 CFU/cm2, 3.810 log CFU/cm2 and 3.2 log10 CFU/cm2, respectively were sanitized with 200 ppm chlorine before rinds removal, cutting and juice preparation. Efficacy of 200 ppm chlorine in reducing transfer of Salmonella, aerobic mesophilic bacteria, yeast and mold, and Pseudomonas from the melon surfaces to freshly prepared fruit juice was investigated including the effect of waiting period before refrigeration of the juices. The melon juice filtrates were refrigerated immediately or stored at room temperature (~22oC) for 3 and 5 h before refrigeration. Average Salmonella bacteria recovered in fresh melon juice prepared from unwashed whole cantaloupes, watermelon and honeydew melons was 1.4 log10 CFU/ml, 0.5 log10 CFU/ml and 0.4 log10 CFU/ml, respectively. Juices from unwashed inoculated melons had the highest bacterial populations and storage at an abusive temperature of 10oC led to proliferation. Holding these juices at room temperature for 5 h before refrigeration allowed Salmonella bacteria to increase by 0.5-0.8 log in cantaloupe juice and 0.3-0.5 log in watermelon and honeydew juices. No Salmonella bacteria was determined in fresh juices prepared from melons washed with chlorinated water. The results of this study showed that washing melons with 200 ppm chlorine before juice preparation and immediately refrigerating the juice will minimize the chances of Salmonella proliferation.

Keywords: Cantaloupes, watermelon, Honeydew melon, Salmonella contamination, transfer, Salmonella

Received: 08 Aug 2018; Accepted: 22 Oct 2018.

Edited by:

Karl Matthews, Rutgers University, The State University of New Jersey, United States

Reviewed by:

Keith Warriner, University of Guelph, Canada
Cangliang Shen, West Virginia University, United States
Marilyn Erickson, University of Georgia, United States  

Copyright: © 2018 Ukuku, Mukhopadhyay and Olanya. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Dr. Dike Ukuku, Beltsville Agricultural Research Center, Agricultural Research Service (USDA), Beltsville, United States, dike.ukuku@ars.usda.gov