Behavior of Escherichia coli O157:H7 on lettuce and spinach and Salmonella montevideo on tomatoes
McCullum, Nakieta Monque
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Escherichia coli O157:H7 and Salmonella spp. are the two organisms most commonly associated with bacterial foodborne illness attributed to the consumption of fresh produce. The first study determined the behavior of E. coli O157:H7 on the surface and after infiltration into the stem of lettuce and spinach leaves stored at 0ºC for 10 days and then shifted to 12ºC for 4 days. Statistical analyses of the results indicate greater survival of E. coli O157:H7 when internalized within the leaf of lettuce and spinach. The objective of the second study was to observe and compare the colonization habits and populations of Salmonella montevideo, S. typhimirium, and Pseudomonas syringae pv. tomato on the external surfaces, pulp, and seeds of flower inoculated tomato plants. One-hundred percent of P. syringae samples were positive, while 30% of samples were positive for S. Typhimirium and 80% were positive in S. Montevideo.