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A CASE OF “BLOWN PACK” MEAT LINKED TO CLOSTRIDIUM ESTERTHETICUM IN IRELAND

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TEL: +353-1-8059985; FAX: +353-1-8059550; EMAIL: brian.byrne@teagasc.ie

Abstract

ABSTRACT

The objective of this study was to determine whether Clostridium estertheticum can be linked to the “blown pack” of vacuum-packed beef and lamb. Vacuum-packed chilled beef and lamb samples that had been spoiled by gross gas distension were obtained from two Irish meat processing plants. A sample of purged liquid from each sample was removed from the each meat pack and divided into 3 replicate samples. Both polymerase chain reaction amplification and conventional culturing methods was used to detect C. estertheticum in each purge sample. DNA sequencing was used to confirm its detection. C. estertheticum DNA was detected in beef but not detected in lamb. C. estertheticum was not isolated from the beef or lamb purge samples. This study represents the first confirmed link between C. estertheticum and the blown pack vacuum-packed beef in Ireland.

PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS

Blown pack spoilage of vacuum packed meat is a significant problem in the meat industry and has the potential to cause considerable economic loss to meat processors. This study found, the first evidence of Clostridium estertheticum in vacuum packed meat in Ireland. This research will contribute to a better understanding of blown pack spoilage of vacuum packed meat caused by C. estertheticum.

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