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International Journal of Food Microbiology
Volume 280, 2018, Pages: 87-99

Seafood spoilage microbiota and associated volatile organic compounds at different storage temperatures and packaging conditions

Olumide A.Odeyemi, Christopher M.Burke, Christopher C.J.Bolch, Roger Stanley

Ecology and Biodiversity Centre, Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies (IMAS), University of Tasmania, Launceston, Australia.


Seafood comprising of both vertebrate and invertebrate aquatic organisms are nutritious, rich in omega-3 fatty acids, essential vitamins, proteins, minerals and form part of healthy diet. However, despite the health and nutritional benefits, seafood is highly perishable. Spoilage of seafood could be as a result of microbial activity, autolysis or chemical oxidation. Microbial activity constitutes more spoilage than others. Spoilage bacteria are commonly Gram negative and produce off odours and flavours in seafood as a result of their metabolic activities. Storage temperature, handling and packaging conditions affect microbial growth and thus the shelf-life of seafood. Due to the complexity of the microbial communities in seafood, culture dependent methods of detection may not be useful, hence the need for culture independent methods are necessary to understand the diversity of microbiota and spoilage process. Similarly, the volatile organic compounds released by spoilage bacteria are not fully understood in some seafood. This review therefore highlights current knowledge and understanding of seafood spoilage microbiota, volatile organic compounds, effects of storage temperature and packaging conditions on quality of seafood.

Keywords: Seafood quality and safety, Microbiota, Microbial spoilage, Volatile organics.

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