Salmonellae and food safety.
Salmonella is one of the most important foodborne pathogens around the world. The knowledge that very low numbers of Salmonella cells can be infectious emphasizes the need for stringent food safety measures. Traditional methods for isolating and identifying Salmonella in foods rely on preenrichment, selective enrichment in selective and differential media, biochemical tests, and serological confirmation. Recent advances in diagnostic technology have considerably altered testing methods for foodborne Salmonella. Many commercial assay systems and kits that use newer technologies are available to facilitate the identification of Salmonella in foods. These systems include miniaturized biochemical tests, new media formulations, automated instrumentation, DNA/RNA probes, antibody-dependent assays, and polymerase chain reaction. The technologies used for these systems are described, and the various kit formats are compared. Among the limitations of detection methods in terms of food safety are timeliness, limits of detection, and differentiation of virulent and nonvirulent isolates. Current efforts of prevention measures and strategies at different links of the food chain such as consumer education and hazard analysis and critical control point (HACCP) programs are reviewed. Global approaches to food safety are needed.