Cool wash reduces egg pathogen levels
US researchers from the have discovered that egg
producers can reduce the levels of Salmonella, Campylobacter and Listeria on
eggs by using cool water instead of warm during a second commercial wash.
Using cool water helps the eggs to cool down more quickly, which reduces
the risk of pathogen growth both inside and outside the shell, according to
research published in the Journal of Food Safety in December.
The research findings may provide a simple method for reducing egg
The researchers from the US
Department of Agriculture
and the Auburn University
tested three water temperature schemes in
dual washing commercial systems. The first test used water at 49 degrees
Celsius for both washes of the eggs.
The second used water at 49 degrees Celsius for the first wash and 24
degrees Celsius for the second. The third used water at 24 degrees Celsius
for both washes.
They found that using warm temperature water in a first wash and cooler
water in a second wash could provide the greatest benefit by both reducing egg
temperature and microbial levels.
While Salmonella, Campylobacter and Listeria were all detected in shell
emulsion and wash-water samples from cool-water washing treatments, none were
detected in the eggs contents throughout the storage period of eight weeks.
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