A comparison of sanitizers for fresh-cut mango (Mangifera indica cv. Keitt) was made. Mangos were obtained from a farm in Homestead, Fla., and stored at 15 °C until processed. Before cutting, fruit were dipped in solutions of either sodium hypochlorite (NaOCl) (200 ppm) or peroxyacetic acid (100 ppm). The cut pieces were dipped in acidified sodium chlorite (NaClO2) (200 ppm, pH 2.6) or dilute peroxyacetic acid (50 ppm) for 30 seconds. Resulting cut slices were placed in polystyrene clamshell food containers and stored at 5 °C for 21 days. Samples in the clamshells were tested for changes in microbial stability and for quality parameters every 7 days. Results showed that even though the fruit slices were sanitized after cutting, cut fruit microbial populations were related to the method of whole fruit sanitation. After 15-21 days in storage at 5 °C, cut slices from whole fruit sanitized with peroxyacetic acid that were subsequently treated with dilute peroxyacetic acid or acidified NaClO2 had less contamination [<1 colony-forming unit (cfu) per gram] than samples cut from whole fruit sanitized with NaOCl (<1000 to 3700 cfu/g). These data demonstrate that the method of whole fruit sanitation plays a role in determining the cleanliness of the cut fruit. These sanitizer systems (peroxyacetic acid on whole fruit followed by peroxyacetic acid or acidified NaClO2 on cut slices) effectively reduced microbial growth and kept microbial counts low on cut fruit surfaces for 21 days when compared to cut fruit slices from NaOCl-treated whole fruit.
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