Microbiological surveillance of a bovine raw milk farm through multiplex real-time PCR
Posted: April 4th, 2012 - 10:50pm
Source: Foodborne Pathogens and Disease
Raw milk is increasingly appreciated by consumers but can be contaminated by a variety of zoonotic pathogens. Therefore, preventive measures, such as on-farm hazard analysis critical control point (HACCP) programs, must be applied to protect consumers. The aim of the present study was the comparison of a multiplex real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) assay with a culture-based approach in an on-farm quality assurance program for the detection ofEscherichia coli O157, Salmonella spp., and Listeria monocytogenes in bulk tank milk, in-line milk filters, manure, and feces. Results revealed that the real-time PCR was more sensitive in detecting E. coli O157 than the culture method in filters (48% vs. 4% positive), manure (93% vs. 7% positive) and feces (60% vs. 4% positive). The two methods were equally efficient in detecting L. monocytogenes (8% of filters), while Salmonella spp. was not detected in any sample. In conclusion, the real-time PCR, by reducing analysis time to two working days, can be proposed as a useful tool in the raw milk primary production setting as a rapid and user-friendly screening method.