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By K V Peter

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The antimicrobial activity of these compounds is influenced by the culture medium, the temperature of incubation and the inoculum size. g. , 2001b). 5). e. , 1999b). For example, the essential oil of mint (Mentha piperita) has been shown to inhibit the growth of Salmonella enteritidis and Listeria monocytogenes in culture media for 2 days at 30ºC. 8) at 4ºC and 10ºC was variable. Salmonella enteritidis died off in the appetizers under all conditions examined but not when inoculated in paté and maintained at 10ºC.

3 Antimicrobial properties Herbal spices are important sources of antimicrobials, and the use of spices, their essential oils or active ingredients for controlling microbial growth in food materials constitutes an alternative approach to chemical additives. Some of the spice essential oils (individual or combinations) are highly inhibitory to selected pathogenic and spoilage micro-organisms. The fractionation of essential oils and further application help to improve the level of activity in some cases.

Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy 45; 549–50. E. (1995), Natural antimicrobials from plants. W. ), pp. 58–89. Blackie Academic Professional, London. E. C. (2000), Preservatives: traditional preservatives – oils and spices. , Batt, C. and Patel, P. (eds), pp. 1717–22. Academic Press, London. A. A. (1999), Antimicrobial activity of the essential oils of five Eucalyptus species growing in Nigeria. Filoterapia 70: 526–8. C. and AKGUL, A. ). Food Chemistry 75: 459–63. , WEISSLOWICZ, H. and RAVID, U.

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