alexa Microbiological controls across the productive cycle of Dicentrarchus labrax L. and Sparus aurata L.: a study from the environment to the final product
Geology & Earth Science

Geology & Earth Science

Journal of Oceanography and Marine Research

Author(s): G Caruso, G Maimone, M Mancuso, A Modica, L Genovese

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The microbiological quality of water, sediments and seafood products of three Sicilian marine fish farms (Castellammare Gulf, Capo d'Orlando and Porto Palo) was investigated in order to draw a complete picture of the health conditions from the start (environment) to the end (seafood product) of the productive cycle. Before the beginning of fish farming, low concentrations of faecal contamination indicators (faecal coliforms, Escherichia coli, enterococci) were found in the water of each examined area. Due to the enhanced organic load released from cages, the set-up of fish farming significantly altered the distribution of faecal indicators and sometimes that of halophilic vibrios in the pelagic compartment. Significant differences in the density of heterotrophic bacteria were sometimes recorded at the sediment level. Despite this increase in microbial abundance, the microbiological conditions remained acceptable for the productive process. Pathogens (Salmonella spp., Vibrio parahaemolyticus, Listeria monocytogenes, Staphylococcus aureus) were mostly absent in seafood products. The study underlines that the achievement of good quality levels in aquaculture strongly depends on the conformity of the rearing environment to qualitative microbiological standards, highlighting the importance of sanitary controls along the different steps of the productive cycle.

This article was published in Aquaculture Research and referenced in Journal of Oceanography and Marine Research

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