Ready-to-eat minimally processed fruits and vegetables are an ideal substrate for the growth of microorganisms, including human pathogens and mycotoxin-producing species, which question their quality and safety for customers. While we are aware of the importance of production workflows in structuring the products' microbial communities, we still know little about the factors that shape microbiomes during the timeframe products are available to customers, and beyond this timeframe. Here, we study the influence of storage light condition (light or dark) on microbiological and physico-chemical parameters of minimally processed rocket leaves at different shelf life timepoints (the day the product becomes available to consumers, expiration date, 3 days after the expiration date). Our results suggest that the total microbial load increases from the day the product becomes available to consumers, to the expiry date and after the product's expiration. However, when studying the composition of the fungal microbiome, we did not observe significant changes in its structure as the effect of product shelf life or storage light condition. We also found that products stored under light condition had a higher total bacterial load compared to those stored in darkness. Our results might be helpful in crafting improved workflows for product's storage during its shelf life, which might ultimately lead to a re-evaluation of storage times resulting in reduced food waste due to product spoilage or expiration.

Light and storage time influence the microbial quality of minimally processed rocket

Malacrinò A.;Belgacem I.;Piscopo A.
2022

Abstract

Ready-to-eat minimally processed fruits and vegetables are an ideal substrate for the growth of microorganisms, including human pathogens and mycotoxin-producing species, which question their quality and safety for customers. While we are aware of the importance of production workflows in structuring the products' microbial communities, we still know little about the factors that shape microbiomes during the timeframe products are available to customers, and beyond this timeframe. Here, we study the influence of storage light condition (light or dark) on microbiological and physico-chemical parameters of minimally processed rocket leaves at different shelf life timepoints (the day the product becomes available to consumers, expiration date, 3 days after the expiration date). Our results suggest that the total microbial load increases from the day the product becomes available to consumers, to the expiry date and after the product's expiration. However, when studying the composition of the fungal microbiome, we did not observe significant changes in its structure as the effect of product shelf life or storage light condition. We also found that products stored under light condition had a higher total bacterial load compared to those stored in darkness. Our results might be helpful in crafting improved workflows for product's storage during its shelf life, which might ultimately lead to a re-evaluation of storage times resulting in reduced food waste due to product spoilage or expiration.
amplicon sequencing
arugula
bacteria
fungi
plant pathogens
ready-to-eat
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
Zappia_2022_Ann Appl Biol_ Light_editor.pdf

accesso aperto

Descrizione: file editoriale
Tipologia: Versione Editoriale (PDF)
Licenza: Creative commons
Dimensione 1.86 MB
Formato Adobe PDF
1.86 MB Adobe PDF Visualizza/Apri

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.12318/130486
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus 0
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 0
social impact