Original Article

Isolation of fecal Escherichia coli from fresh strawberries (fragaria ananassa) in Iran


Background and Objectives: Microbial safety of the fresh fruits is a global concern. The production of strawberry (Fragaria ananassa) in Iran has grown 4.5% from 2016 to 2019. Little information is available about the microbiological quality of strawberry produced in Iran. The objective of this investigation was to assess the fecal Escherichia coli (FEC) contamination of fresh strawberries of south of Kerman province where is the centers of production and supply of strawberries to other parts of Iran.
Materials and Methods: In this cross-sectional descriptive study, the FEC of a total number of 109 strawberry samples, which were collected from green-houses of strawberry of Kerman province during three months, were enumerated using the most probable number (MPN) as described by Iranian National Standards Organization, protocol No.2946, and interpreted using the latest statute released by Iran Veterinary Organization, Executive order number 2946, released in 2011.
Results: MPN of FEC counted in strawberries ranged between <0.3 (n=37) and >110 (n=19) per gram (g) having a mean, mode, and median value of 250.3, <0.3, and 9.4 MPN/g, respectively. More than one-fourth of the samples (28.44%) were polluted with FEC at a level of >100 MPN/g.
Conclusion: Our findings may be resulted from the sanitary quality of the farm and strawberries of the study area, which indicated that the microbial safety of the strawberries in this survey was not satisfactory, alarming public health.

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IssueVol 14 No 5 (2022) QRcode
SectionOriginal Article(s)
DOI https://doi.org/10.18502/ijm.v14i5.10963
Contamination; Escherichia coli; Fragaria; Fruit; Iran; Public health

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How to Cite
Hamidian N, Salari S, Rashki A, Najimi M. Isolation of fecal Escherichia coli from fresh strawberries (fragaria ananassa) in Iran. Iran J Microbiol. 2022;14(5):683-688.