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United Nations Addresses Health Concern of Pre-Cut Melons

EMSL Analytical provides food testing services to detect bacteria, such as Listeria, in our microbiology laboratories.


Infection Control Today reports that the United Nationís food standards body, Codex Alimentarius Commission, has made recommendations concerning the processing of melons to protect consumerís health. The regulations were put in place in response to increased popularity of pre-cut melon slices and the food poisoning outbreaks caused by their bacterial contamination.

Exposed melon pulp has been known to collect large amounts of bacteria, which has been linked to life-threatening Salmonella and Listeria outbreaks. Therefore, the Codex Alimentarius Commission advised that all pre-cut melons be wrapped, packaged, and refrigerated as soon as possible. Additionally, pre-cut melons should only be distributed at a temperature of 4į C or less.

Most individuals infected with Salmonella develop fever, diarrhea, and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after the infection. The illness typically lasts 4 to 7 days, and most people are able to recover without treatment. However, young children, the elderly, and those with weak immune systems may develop more serve illnesses where hospitalization is required.

Exposure to Listeria can cause a bacterial infection in the body known as Listeriosis. Side effects may include high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain, and diarrhea. Similarly, for children, the elderly, and individuals with a weak immune system, Listeriosis can result in death if the infection is severe.

ďSalmonella and Listeria contamination in products can take a toll on the reputation and finances of the companies involved in their production and distribution,Ē states†Jason Dobranic, Ph.D., Vice President of Microbiology and Life Sciences at EMSL. ďEMSL Analyticalís advanced microbiology laboratories test food samples, as well as environmental samples, for Salmonella, Listeria, and other foodborne pathogens for a wide variety of companies in the food industry.Ē

For more information about EMSLís food testing division, please contact EMSL at 800-220-3675,† , or visit††or

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.
EMSL Analytical is a full service testing company providing quality lab services under the same private ownership since 1981. Including the corporate lab facility in Cinnaminson, NJ, EMSL Analytical operates over thirty laboratories nationwide in the US and Canada. We provide analytical services for environmental, indoor air quality (IAQ), industrial hygiene, forensics and materials science, consumer products, food safety, PCR, pharmaceutical, asbestos, lead, and radiological samples. The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations, as well as state and federal regulating bodies.



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