Date of Award

Spring 5-2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Food Science

First Advisor

Rosalee Hellberg, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Fred Caporaso, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Lilian Were, Ph.D.


Raw, ready-to-eat (RTE) seafood can pose health threats due to the potential presence of foodborne pathogens. Listeria monocytogenes is a known microbiological hazard associated with raw, RTE seafood. Salmonella enterica has not traditionally been recognized as a hazard in seafood, but it is an emerging concern, with five outbreaks in seafood in the United States from 2011 to 2021. The presence of E. coli and total coliforms can indicate fecal or environmental contamination. The objective of this study was to evaluate the microbiological safety and quality of raw, RTE seafood sold in Orange County, CA. A total of 105 raw, RTE samples of sushi, ceviche, and poke were collected from restaurants in Orange County, CA. Samples were tested for Salmonella and Listeria utilizing methods from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Bacteriological Analytical Manual (BAM). E. coli and total coliforms were enumerated utilizing 3M Petrifilm plates. The results showed that two samples (1.9%) were positive for generic E. coli, with a range of 5-35 CFU/g. Coliforms were detected in 85 samples (81%), with a range of 5CFU/g to 1710 CFU/g. None of the samples tested positive for Salmonella or Listeria monocytogenes; however, other microorganisms were detected in 17 samples, including Listeria spp., Proteus mirabilis, Providencia rettgeri, and Morganella morganii. These results indicate low levels of microbiological contamination in raw, RTE seafood.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Included in

Food Science Commons



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.