Ozone is a strong oxidant and disinfecting agent. The bactericidal effects of ozone have been documented on a wide range of organisms, including Gram positive and Gram negative bacteria. In this study, the effect of treatment with gaseous ozone on microbial contamination (Total Aerobic Mesophilic and Psicrophilic Microrganism Count, Enterobacteriaceae, Total and Fecal Coliforms, Escherichia coli, Salmonella spp, Campylobacter spp., Listeria monocytogenes) and sensory characteristics of poultry carcasses were investigated. N.50 carcasses were divided into two parts. The first batch was used as control and stored in a coolroom at 0-1°C; the second one was kept in another cool room, with the same dimensions and at the same temperature, provided with an ozone generator, working for 60 minutes every 4 hours in order to reach an ozone concentration of 0.4 ppm. Significative differences were found between the control batch and the treated one for Total Aerobic Counts (at 32° and 20°C) and Enterobacteriaceae. Salmonella arizonae, Campylobacter fetus spp fetus and Listeria monocytogenes were sometimes found in both batches. Acceptable sensory qualities were observed until day 14 and 20 after slaughter for the control and the treated batch, respectively.
Poultry carcasses, Ozone, Decontamination.