Bacteriological Safety of Street foods in Chennai
Author(s):
R.Sowmya, Dr.B.Bobby
Keywords:
Food borne illness, Food safety, Microbial contamination, Street food
Abstract
Street foods are on a rise in the country as they offer less expensive and a variety of foods to the consumer. It contributes to economic growth of the country and helps to meet the nutritional requirement of people but it has become an important public health issue due to widespread food borne diseases. The present study determined the status of food safety and hygiene practices followed by street food vendors in two areas of Chennai city namely Sowcarpet and Madipakkam by use of a structured questionnaire and an observational study and assessed the safety of some popular street foods viz. sugarcane juice, bhelpuri and panipuri in terms of microbial contamination with regard to total plate count, E.coli and Staphylococcus aureus. Thirty vendors were randomly selected and data on demographics, food safety and food handling practices was collected. The study revealed that most of the vendors were not following necessary personal hygiene measures and majority of the units were running without FSSAI registration or license. Vendors lack awareness about food borne illness and how it affects health of customers who consume unsafe food regularly. Prevalence of microbial contamination among selected street foods revealed that foods were heavily contaminated. The average total plate count of six samples were in unsatisfactory ranges (1, 30,830 cfu/g). E.coli was found to be highest in bhelpuri samples (16,000 cfu/g) whereas Staphylococcus aureus was highest (2800 cfu/g) in panipuri water. Contamination was high in the samples collected from Sowcarpet which could be attributed to the heavy traffic and busy streets that’s always dusty and crowded with people contributing to contamination of food that is left open on the street side. Thus, the study ensures that there is an urgent need for imparting knowledge about safe and hygienic food handling practices to the street food vendors for a safer consumption of street foods.
Article Details
Unique Paper ID: 152327

Publication Volume & Issue: Volume 8, Issue 2

Page(s): 920 - 925
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