E. coli suppressed by cranberry concentrate

by Editor fleischwirtschaft.com
Wednesday, December 10, 2008

U.S. researchers from the University of Maine have recently released results from studies conducted on E. coli O157:H7 growth in ground beef injected with cranberry concentrate.

Results found that the addition of cranberry concentrate to ground beef inhibited the growth of E. coli O157:H7.

The research involved inoculating ground beef with 2.5%, 5% and 7.5% levels of cranberry concentrate then storing the samples at 4 °C for five days. After the five days, populations of E. coli O157:H7 were reduced compared to the control sample.

Tests were also conducted on the taste and colour of burgers made from ground beef inoculated with cranberry concentrate, with results indicating there was no difference in appearance and flavour at the 2.5% and 5% cranberry concentrate levels.

While this concept of inoculating ground beef with cranberry concentrate is fairly new, the results of this research is good news for U.S. meatpackers. Millions of pounds of raw ground beef have been recalled in the U.S. over the past couple of years due to E. coli O157:H7 contamination, which has impacted consumer confidence in the food safety of US meat products.