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Investigation of Routes for Transfer of Food and Water-borne Pathogens to Produce


This project seeks to determine if some common food-borne pathogens, Salmonella spp., E. coli O157:H7 and Listeria monocytogenes, when present in manure or irrigation water applied to soil invade the tissues and fruit of lettuce, tomatoes, strawberries and cucumbers. In addition, the effect of root damage and the presence of known plant pathogens in the soil on the ability of the food-borne bacteria to enter the plant will be determined. This study builds upon the two recent studies that have demonstrated the ability of E. coli O157:H7 to enter lettuce tissues when introduced into soil by

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Expected Impact of Project Outcomes on Food Safety in Ontario: The results of this study will provide an answer whether Salmonella, E.coli O157:H7, Listeria monocytogenes from contaminated soil, irrigated water and manure can enter the plant tissue and internalize them. This will allow identification of risks associated with the presence of pathogens in soil and will help identify strategies to control these hazards. <P> For more information, please visit the <a href="; target="_blank">Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) Food Safety Research Program</a>.

Griffiths, Mansel
University of Guelph
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