Brazilian Journal of Microbiology
Print version ISSN 1517-8382
FIJAN, Sabina; CENCIC, Avrelija and TURK, Sonja ostar. Hygiene monitoring of textiles used in the food industry. Braz. J. Microbiol. [online]. 2006, vol.37, n.3, pp. 356-361. ISSN 1517-8382. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1517-83822006000300028.
Protective clothing is required in the food-processing industry, to protect workers from contamination by bacteria, fungi, viruses, prions etc. contained in the secretions and raw meat of slaughtered animals, and to protect the meat from being contaminated by microorganisms carried by the workers. It is well-understood that textiles are a control point (CP), and must be appropriately cleaned and disinfected in order to prevent biocontamination. Although the laundering procedure itself is important for achieving disinfection, it is also essential to maintain an appropriate hygiene level in the laundry, in order to prevent recontamination of textiles by environmental viable microorganisms. In this study, a sanitary-microbiological analysis was carried out in selected CPs in two laundries. Chemo-thermal washing efficiency was determined by evaluating the anti-bacterial effect against Enterococcus faecium and Staphylococcus aureus. The hygienic state of the laundries was determined by evaluating the number and type of microorganisms at selected CPs throughout the whole laundering procedure. The results indicated that the sanitary condition of both laundries did not reach the required levels and that several microbes were resistant to cleaning and disinfecting agents. It is obvious from the results that achievement of an appropriate hygiene level during laundering textiles from the food processing industry requires the implementation of appropriate corrective monitoring measures.
Keywords : laundry hygiene; textiles; food-processing industry; occupational health.