Poor hygiene and sanitary practices among poultry meat sellers can lead to the contamination of meat. This contamination can occur as a result of contamination from the contact surfaces in the cold room and retail outlet. The aim of the present study was to assess the sanitary quality of Broiler meat and its contact surfaces (apron, butcher hand, butcher table, bowl, butcher knife and weighing scale) in cold room and retail outlet. Swab samples were assessed for total bacteria count, total coliform count, total staphylococcus count and total fungal counts using Standard Microbiology methods. Mean Total viable count of each sample ranged from Log 10 cfu/cm2/g 3.64 to7.94 and 3.14 to 4.75 from the retail outlets and Cold-room respectively. Mean Total Staphylococcus count. of each sample ranged from Log 10 cfu/cm2/g 1.67to 4.67 and 2.01 to 3.87 from the retail outlets and Cold-room respectively. Counts from the retail outlets were significantly higher than counts in the cold room. Organisms isolated included ; Staphylococcus sp, Bacillus sp, Escherichia coli, Proteus sp, Salmonella sp, Aeromonas sp, Pseudomonas sp, Klebsiella sp and Enterobacter sp. Fungi isolated was Aspergillus sp, Saccharomyces sp, Penicillium sp and Rhodotorula sp. Antibiogram was carried out on the isolated organisms it was observed that Klebsiella sp and Enterobacter sp were resistant to most of the antibiotics used. In order to prevent cross-contamination of meat with isolated bacteria, appropriate cleaning and sanitization steps are required. According to the study, meat contact surfaces that were not thoroughly cleaned before usage, could function as a source of cross contamination. It is recommended that meat sellers especially in developing countries need proper education and training on good hygiene practice. Regulating agencies are also advised to ensure strict compliance by meat sellers to safety standards by embarking on routine inspection at retail outlets and market places.
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