Development and detection of dominance among lactic acid spoilage bacteria from cured meats

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Zhang, Guopeng
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Spoiled vacuum-packaged sliced ham and corned beef samples were analyzed and both homofermentative lactobacilli and leuconostocs were found to dominate in the spoilage process $(10\sp7{-}10\sp9$ CFU/cm$\sp2).$ The number of lactobacilli was consistently a little bit higher than the leuconostocs, but no more than one order. In corned beef packages, the bacterial number in the slime (purge) was one or two orders higher than on the meat surface. The organisms that formed ropy slime on the packaged meat lost their ropy slime-producing ability on agar plates. Sucrose addition to the formulation of corned beef did not change the dominance pattern of the LAB which was not surprising since all the strains recovered from the sucrose-added and control meat samples were able to ferment sucrose. These isolates were identified as Lactobacillus curvatus, Lactobacillus sake and Leuconostoc mesenteroides ssp. mesenteroides based on their morphology, key biochemical reactions and the API 50 CHL test results. (Abstract shortened by UMI.)