Risk assessment for Salmonella in melons and tomatoes

| October 8, 2014

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photos-cantaloupe-image15124088The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has published Scientific Opinions detailing risk assessments for the contamination of melons by Salmonella and contamination of tomatoes by Salmonella and Norovirus.

The expert Panel on Biological Hazards (BIOHAZ) compiled both Opinions and considered epidemiological data and risk factors for contamination throughout the food chain. The Panel also looked at available estimates of the incidence of Salmonella and Norovirus occurrence, and at mitigation options to prevent contamination, as well as the possible use of microbiological criteria.

The Panel concluded that key risk factors for contamination with both pathogens included environmental factors, such as heavy rainfall, and the use of contaminated water for irrigation. They recommended the use of good agricultural, hygiene and manufacturing practices to reduce contamination, but were unable to assess the usefulness of microbiological criteria because of a lack of relevant information.

The Opinions for melons and tomatoes can both be found on the EFSA website.

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