Transmission of Enteropathogens through Fresh Herbs and Method of using them as Safe Condiments
Rumpa Saha, Himanshi Grover, Malvika Singh, Sungtila T Jamir, Bhoomika Saxena, Amir M Khan, Narendra P Singh
Coriander, Enteropathogens, Fresh produce, Mint
Citation Information :
Saha R, Grover H, Singh M, Jamir ST, Saxena B, Khan AM, Singh NP. Transmission of Enteropathogens through Fresh Herbs and Method of using them as Safe Condiments. J Gastrointest Infect 2018; 8 (1):22-27.
Background and objectives: As an indispensable dietary component, fresh fruits and vegetables, which are often consumed raw, have been reported to harbor large microbial populations often culminating in enteric disease outbreaks. The present study aimed to assess the microbial quality of coriander and mint and find the efficacy of potassium permanganate (KMnO4) in effectively removing such microbes.
Materials and methods: Ten grams each of fresh, unstored green coriander (n = 50) and mint (n = 50) samples were examined for their parasitic and bacterial content before and after washing with tap water and with an aqueous solution of 0.001% KMnO4. The different species of bacteria, as well as their main burden in these herbs, were also estimated along with the parasites they harbored.
Results: Only 22% unwashed herbs harbored parasites which were reduced to a significant number on washing with tap water. One hundred percent of the herb samples before washing, and 98% of tap water washed herb samples were contaminated with bacteria. A total of 33 different species of bacteria were isolated, from members of the family Enterobacteriaceae (56.3%) Pseudomonadaceae (15.6%), Vibrionaceae (9.4%,), and Acinetobacteriaceae (6.2%). These bacteria were significantly removed after treatment with KMnO4.
Conclusion: The study reveals the presence of harmful enteric bacteria and parasites in fresh green coriander and mint which are liable to cause enteric diseases. We recommend that all the fresh produce which is consumed raw should be treated with 0.001% KMnO4 after tap water washing to render them safe for consumption.
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