XHULIETA HAMITI1*,ILIRJANA BOCI1, ELDA ZIU2 , ARDIAN XINXO3
1Chemistry Department, Natural Science Faculty, University of Tirana, Albania
2 Industrial Chemistry Departments, Natural Science Faculty, University of Tirana, Albania
2 Head of Quality Control, “E.H.W GmbH”, Meat Processing Plant-Tirana, Albania
3 Deputy Director, ISUV of Albania
*Coresponding author Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The dry-fermented sausages that have always been imported in Albania have recently become the most consumed products. Today they are produced by some local factories. A large amount of the most representative raw fermented sausages, as “Hungary salami”, “Cacciatore”, and Milano”, are manufactured at Albanian meat processing factories. There is little information about the survival of food pathogens in different ripening stages of these new products. We controlled some lots of production to see aspects of quality. Therefore, the microbiological quality (Salmonella spp., Escherichia-coli.), nitrite, water activity (aw), NaCl content and pH were determined in two types of fermented sausages during the ripening time from days 0 to 60. The temperature in ripening camera was 23°C for the first days of maturation and 14±1 °C during all days left. As a result Salmonella spp. and Escherichia-coliwere not detected at any time. The mean value of pH decreased from 5.86 to 4.81 in the first days and stabilized at 5.48. Nitrite levels were found decreased in slightly small residual levels. Water activity (aw) decreased slowly and generally correlated with air humidity in the ripening camera and the mean value changed from 0.96 to 0.85 aw. A significantly different correlation between the bacterial count and aw values was found. The results indicate that the microbiological safety of fermented salami depend on the initial contamination level with food pathogens. The analysis was done at the ISUV and at the sausage manufacturer’s laboratory. The differences in composition, size and fermentation/ripening process were determined among the two kind of produced fermented salami. The physicochemical changes that occurred were summarized in terms of decrease of pH-value, nitrite level, decrease of aw and increase of NaCl content. From the hygienic standpoint, it is important that Escherichia-coli, Salmonella spp. were not found in finished products.
Keywords: food pathogens, fermented salami, nitrite, water activity, pH, NaCl content.