TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Australian rockmelon is widely discussed since reportedly containing listeria. The bacteria contaminated in the fruit had caused three people to death after consuming it.
Listeria is actually can be found in the environment, such as lands, animal feeds made from fermented greens (silage) or other natural sources include feces.
The L. monocytogenes bacteria are very strong and resistant to heat, acid, and salt as well as freezing and can keep growing at a temperature of 4 degrees Celsius, especially in the food that stored in the fridge. L. monocytogenes may create biofilms, the mucus layer on the food surface.
Here are some suggestions to be applied to prevent such food poisoning:
1. Rinse the raw foods with running water, such as fruits and vegetables before being eaten, cut, or cooked. Even the food has been peeled, it is a must to clean it;
2. Rub well the agricultural products, such as melons and cucumbers by using a clean brush and dry it with a clean cloth or paper before place it at the storage;
3. Separate raw meat from vegetables, cooked foods, and instant foods;
4. Wash the cookware, cutting tools which have been used for raw meat, poultry, or any animal products before using it for other products;
5. Wash hands thoroughly with soap before processing food and eating.
A total prevention may not be possible, but the food that had properly cooked, heated and stored generally considered as safe because this bacteria will vanish at 75 degrees Celsius.