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Incidence of Listeria monocytogenes in Cheese Manufacturing Plants from the Northeast Region of São Paulo, Brazil

Barancelli, Giovana V., Camargo, Tarsila M., Reis, Christhiane M. F., Porto, Ernani, Hofer, Ernesto, Oliveira, Carlos A. F.
Journal of food protection 2011 v.74 no.5 pp. 816-819
Listeria monocytogenes, cheesemaking, cheeses, factories, floors, manufacturing, pasteurized milk, pathogens, serotypes, Brazil
The incidence of Listeria monocytogenes in three cheese manufacturing plants from the northeastern region of São Paulo, Brazil, was evaluated from October 2008 to September 2009. L. monocytogenes was found in samples from two plants, at percentages of 13.3% (n = 128) and 9.6% (n = 114). Samples of raw and pasteurized milk, water, and Minas Frescal cheese were negative for L. monocytogenes, although the pathogen was isolated from the surface of Prato cheese and in brine from one of the plants evaluated. L. monocytogenes was also isolated from different sites of the facilities, mainly in non–food contact surfaces such as drains, floors, and platforms. Serotype 4b was the most predominant in the plants studied. The results of this study indicate the need for control strategies to prevent the dispersion of L. monocytogenes in the environment of cheese manufacturing plants.