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The condition in which sprouts are produced is ideal for the growth of the foodborne pathogens, and if proper food safety practices and handling are not followed, sprouts can harbor pathogens when the seeds are sprouted. Consumption of contaminated sprouts have been responsible for at least 50 outbreaks in the past two decades. In the majority of these outbreaks, the primary source of contamination is contaminated sprout seeds. However, poor sanitation and lack of hygienic practices can also lead to contamination of the final product.
This publication provides general information and guidelines to reduce the food safety risk associated with sprouts.
Virginia Cooperative Extension materials are available for public use, reprint, or citation without further permission, provided the use includes credit to the author and to Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, and Virginia State University.
Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia State University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating. Edwin J. Jones, Director, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg; M. Ray McKinnie, Administrator, 1890 Extension Program, Virginia State University, Petersburg.
August 30, 2019