Can Foodservice Packaging be Used to Prevent Foodborne Illnesses: A Comparative Study of Multiple Packaging
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A comparative study of multiple packaging was conducted to determine if foodservice packaging could be used as an intervention in preventing microbial growth on leftovers that are temperature abused. Aerobic plate counts were used to establish a baseline of bacterial growth in comparison to cardboard, plastic, and Styrofoam foodservice packaging and various scenarios including fridge, counter, and incubator. Samples of cooked chicken were counted at six-hour intervals for twelve hours. Survival and growth of Salmonella Typhimurium 53647 in cardboard, plastic, and Styrofoam packaging was then analyzed over a twelve-hour timespan in the different environmental scenarios. Chicken portions stored at 2 to 37°C for 12 hours were inoculated with 2.58 log CFU/g of Salmonella, and counts were made at 6-hour intervals to determine the effect of packaging. Results concluded that there was a significant difference in bacteria growth overtime, and plastic foodservice packaging has the greatest significance for survival and growth of Salmonella. These findings suggest that select foodservice packaging may be used as a viable tool for reducing microbial populations and can help manage risk of human illness from food.