Coliform bacteria are common contaminants of meats.
a. Why might one expect to find coliforms in samples of meat? b. High coliform counts in food indicate the potential for finding which intestinal pathogens? c.In terms of food safety, why is it suggested to cook hamburgers medium-well to well-done, whereas steaks can be cooked rare?
Coliform bacteria are rod-shaped. They do not produce spores. They can be non-motile or motile. They are lactose fermenting bacteria.
(a) The coliform bacteria occur in the intestines of the warm-blooded animals. It is part of the meat during the butchering process. The digestive tract gets opened during the butchering and it releases the coliform bacteria over the meat.
(b) Typhoid fever, intestinal viral disease, salmonella, cholera, and dysentery are the intestinal pathogens indicates the high coliform count in the food
(c) The pathogens become incorporated with the hamburger during the process of baking and grinding. The steak is not cooked as the pathogens have contact with the meat’s outer surface, not the inner surface.