Microbiology of Root Crops, Edible Corms, Tubers, Bulbs, and Rhizomes: An Endobacteriological Study
International Journal of Nutrition and Food Sciences
Volume 3, Issue 2, March 2014, Pages: 69-72
Received: Dec. 31, 2013;
Published: Feb. 28, 2014
Views 3392 Downloads 290
Jack R. Edelman, Department of Science, Borough of Manhattan Community College, City University of New York, New York, U.S.A.
Yue J. Lin, Department of Biological Sciences, Saint John’s University, Jamaica, U.S.A.
Follow on us
A variety of root crops, corms, tubers, and rhizomes commonly eaten and available in public markets were tested for the presence and identification of bacteria in their inner flesh. Bacteria were grown on agar slants and identified by DNA sequence analysis. Among foods tested were various radishes, onions, shallots, leeks, yams, parsnips, turnips, carrots, potatoes, ginger, garlic, parsnips, beets, horse radish, kohl-rabi, and less well-known crops such as yucca/cassava, celery root/celeriac, jicama, taro, lotus, water chestnut, Chinese/Korean yam (nagaimo), edible burdock (golden gobo), batata, root parsley, and yautia (malanga). Examples of the bacterial genera identified were, among others, species of Arthrobacter, Pantoea, Bacillus, Pseudomonas, Staphylococcus, Microbacterium, Stenotrophomonas, Rahnella, Rhodococcus, Paenibacillus, Oerskovia, Gordonia, and Leclercia. While these species are probably present in harmless numbers, their presence may indicate that the inner flesh of these crops should be studied more extensively. Crops that are boiled, fried, baked or otherwise cooked may obviously not be a health hazard, but some of these vegetables are eaten raw or only lightly cooked and may possibly merit further study for possible health implications. Tubers that were very proficient in producing new shoots, such as potato and the Chinese/Korean yam (nagaimo) were found to contain inner flesh free of bacteria and seemed to be resistant to rotting; this may imply that these tubers have antimicrobial properties.
Root Crops, Vegetables, Corms, Tubers, Bulbs, Rhizomes, Bacteria, Endobacteriology
To cite this article
Jack R. Edelman,
Yue J. Lin,
Microbiology of Root Crops, Edible Corms, Tubers, Bulbs, and Rhizomes: An Endobacteriological Study, International Journal of Nutrition and Food Sciences.
Vol. 3, No. 2,
2014, pp. 69-72.
Carlin, F. (2011) Origin of bacterial spores in contaminating foods, Food Microbiology 28:177-182.
Edelman, J.R. and Lin, Y.J. (2011). Microbiology of melons, cucumbers, and squash (Cucurbitaceae) and related fruits. Int’l. J. of Food Science, Technology, & Nutrition, 5: (No.1), 51-65.
Field, M.L., (1979). Fundamentals of Food Microbiology. AVI Publishing Co., Westport, Connecticut, U.S.A.
Holt, J.G., Krieg, N.R., Sneath, P.H.A., Staley, J.T., and Williams, S.T., (2000). In: Bergey’s Manual of Determinative Bacteriology, 9th Edition, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA.
Lopez-Velasco, G., Sbodio, A., Tomas-Callejas, A., Wei, P., Tan, K.H., and Suslow,T.V., (2012). Assessment of root uptake and systemic vine-transport of Salmonella enterica sv. Typhimurium by melon (Cucumis melo) during field production, Int’l. J. of Food Microbiology, 158:65-72.
Roberts, D., Hooper, W., and Greenwood, M., (1995). Practical Food Microbiology, Second Edition, Public Health Laboratory Service, London, England.