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A Microbiological Analysis and Hazard Factor Evaluation of Food Utensils and Fixtures of Food Service Operations in Schools
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 Title & Authors
A Microbiological Analysis and Hazard Factor Evaluation of Food Utensils and Fixtures of Food Service Operations in Schools
Park, Sung-Jun; Hong, Sung-Ho; Lee, Anne Ha-Young; Kim, Cheol-Ju; Kim, Su-Jin; Kim, Sung-Kyoon; Ko, Gwang-Pyo;
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Objectives: The aim of this study was to evaluate the microbial hazards posed by food utensils and fixtures in food service operations at selected middle and high schools located in Seoul, Korea. Methods: We collected 200 samples of utensils and fixtures including cups, spoons/chopsticks, food trays and tables from five different schools in Seoul. Target microorganisms of this study were divided into two groups: total bacterial count and total coliform as indicators of microbial contamination and Bacillus cereus and Staphylococcus aureus as pathogens of food poisoning. We used selective media to quantify microbial concentration and 16S rRNA PCR assay for qualitative analysis. In addition, intensive interviews with nutritionists were conducted and observations were made to identify factors that may affect microbial contamination. Logistic regression analysis was employed to examine the relationship between the microbial concentration and operation characteristics of each operation. Results: The level of microbial concentration in school B and C were significantly lower than in school A, D and E (p<0.05). Some samples from school A, D and E showed over 3.4 log CFU/100 (total bacterial count) and 1.0 log CFU/100 (total coliform), which requires immediate hygienic action. The number of customers per staff member, periodicity of hygiene education for staff and daily operation time of sterilizers were also found to be important factors related with the microbial contamination of food service operations. Conclusions: These results suggested that not only a HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) approach, but also efforts to assess internal risk factors within operations be needed to reduce the microbial contamination of food utensils and fixtures. This study is expected to provide preliminary data for assessing microbial hazards in food service operations.
Food services;Microorganism;School;Eating utensil;
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