The aim of this study was to assess the microbiological quality and safety of some cheeses produced in Apulia region, Southern Italy, and classified as “traditional agri-food products.” A total of 120 samples were collected and analyzed. From results, 82.5% of cheeses analyzed, had a satisfactory microbiological quality according to the European legislation. The coagulase positive Staphylococci (CPS) count was above the limits set by the European legislation in 17.5% of the samples analyzed. Within the 20 strains of Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) isolated, 12 were positive for the detection of the enterotoxin genes. Furthermore, nine strains of S. aureus were positive to reverse passive latex agglutination (SET-RPLA) assay. One of the two samples of Cacioricotta di Vacca Fresco, with a CPS load of 3.02 × 105cfu/g, showed unsatisfactory microbiological safety because was positive to SET-RPLA. Based on the findings, it is essential to apply and maintain good hygiene practices throughout the food chain, especially for traditional agri-food products, which are often produced in small family processing plants using production protocols based on the experience handed down from father to son. Practical application: The traditional agri-food products are foodstuffs much appreciated by consumers because of their organoleptic qualities and taste that brings back to the genuine flavors of the past. However, the hygienic quality and safety of these products is linked to the personal experience of food business operator and not to the regular checking of microbiological parameters that validate the acceptability of foodstuffs and their manufacturing, handling and distribution processes. The results of this study can contribute to the risk analysis for these particular products, and underline the need to apply and maintain good hygiene practices throughout the production chain.
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|Titolo:||Microbiological quality and safety of cheeses belonging to “Traditional Agri-Food Products” (T.A.P.) produced in Southern Italy|
DAMBROSIO, ANGELA (Corresponding)
|Data di pubblicazione:||2018|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|