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An Evaluation of Various Working Practices in Shops Selling Raw and Cooked Meats

G. M. Tebbutt
The Journal of Hygiene
Vol. 97, No. 1 (Aug., 1986), pp. 81-90
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3863214
Page Count: 10
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An Evaluation of Various Working Practices in Shops Selling Raw and Cooked Meats
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Abstract

Three groups of premises (butchers' shops, supermarkets and general dealers) which sell raw and cooked meats were compared. Salmonellas were not detected, but Escherichia coli, and to a lesser degree Staphylococcus aureus and Streptococcus faecalis, were widely distributed in all three groups of premises. Contamination of hands, towels and nail brushes was related to poor working practices. The presence of E. coli or Str. faecalis on slicing machines was associated with contamination of meat samples. A number of wiping cloths were heavily contaminated with E. coli, and many also contained Clostridium perfringens. Few premises provided written cleaning plans, and in many cases staff did not receive an adequate training in food hygiene. The use of disinfectants as part of the cleaning process did not necessarily reduce the level of bacterial contamination. In general there was poor correlation between microbiological results and a visual inspection made by an environmental health officer. The possible reasons for this finding are discussed.

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