1) Cukurova University, Faculty of Agriculture, Dept. of Food Engineering, Balcali, Adana, 01330 Turkey; 2) Alanya Alaaddin Keykubat University, Rafet Kayıs¸ Engineering Faculty, Dept. of Food Engineering. Alanya, Antalya, 07425 Turkey; 3) Gaziosmanpaşa İlçe Tarım ve Orman Müdürlüğü, İstanbul, Turkey
Işıl Var1), Sinan Uzunlu2), Funda Gök Maviş3)
In this study, the microbiological qualities of a sweet product, tahini halva (helva, halawi), which is consumed as a ready-to-eat confection but no heat treated during production were determined for the risk assessment of public health. Between the years of 2010 to 2015, 68 halva containing pistachio, 68 halva containing cocoa and 68 plain halva samples from five tahini production companies and five different brands were analysed in Adana of Turkey. Microbiological quality of samples, in terms of total aerobic mesophilic bacteria count, yeast and mould count, Staphylococcus (S.) aureus count, coliform bacteria and Escherichia (E.) coli count, as well as the presence of Salmonella spp. were evaluated.
As a result, Salmonella spp. was found in two out of the 204 samples only in cocoa containing 68 halva samples. S. aureus was determined in three out of the 68 plain halva samples and four out of the 68 pistachio samples. Besides, the data revealed that E. coli were found in 17 % of plain halva, 26 % of halva containing cocoa and 55 % of halva containing pistachio samples.
In the present study Enterobacteriaceae species other than Salmonella spp. were identified. For instance, Citrobacter youngae, Enterobacter amnigenus, Enterobacter cloacae, Leclercia adecarboxylate, Citrobacter freundii were determined in tahini halva samples (minimum four, and maximum 13 out of 204 samples). These findings assume that food handlers practice insufficient hygienic conditions, and manufacturing is open to cross contaminations. Furthermore, based on these data it might be concluded that halva may pose health risks to consumers because of the insufficient hygienic conditions.
Keywords: Food safety, Halva manufacturing plants, Hygiene, Pathogens, Tahini halva
Arch Lebensmittelhyg 71,
© M. & H. Schaper GmbH & Co.