eCite Digital Repository

Microbiological Quality of Australian Beef


Phillips, D and Sumner, JL and Alexander, JF and Dutton, K, Microbiological Quality of Australian Beef, Journal of Food Protection, 64, (5) pp. 692-696. ISSN 0362-028X (2001) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.4315/0362-028X-64.5.692


A survey of the microbiological quality of beef carcasses and boneless beef produced in Australia was conducted during the period June to November 1998. Sponge samples were collected from 1,275 carcasses, and meat samples were drilled from 990 cartons of frozen boneless beef. Carcass and boneless beef samples were respectively collected from 21 and 27 establishments that concentrated on export and from 38 and 3 establishments supplying the Australian domestic market of which 31 were very small plants slaughtering no more than 150 cattle equivalents per week. The mean log total viable counts (TVCs) were 2.42/cm 2 and 2.52/g for carcasses and boneless meat, respectively. Escherichia coli was detected on 10.3% of carcasses and 5.1% of boneless beef samples and coagulase-positive staphylococci on 24.3% of carcasses and 17.5% of boneless beef. Salmonella was detected on 0.2% of carcasses and 0.1% of boneless beef and E. coli O157:H7 recovered from 0.1% of carcasses but not detected on 990 boneless beef samples. Mean log TVCs/cm 2 differed significantly (P < 0.05) between establishment types. They were lower on carcasses from export establishments (2.20) compared with domestic (2.61) and very small plants (3.10). There were no significant differences in prevalence of Salmonella or E. coli O157:H7 between establishment types. Excision samples were taken from 670 carcasses to make comparisons with the first baseline study of Australian meat, carried out in 1993 to 1994. While there were differences in sampling and microbiological techniques between the two studies that require detailed consideration, there were small but significant improvements in several microbiological criteria for carcasses and boneless meat.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Microbiology
Research Field:Bacteriology
Objective Division:Manufacturing
Objective Group:Processed food products and beverages (excl. dairy products)
Objective Field:Carcass meat (incl. fish and seafood)
UTAS Author:Sumner, JL (Dr John Sumner)
ID Code:21743
Year Published:2001
Web of Science® Times Cited:50
Deposited By:Agricultural Science
Deposited On:2001-08-01
Last Modified:2002-06-13

Repository Staff Only: item control page