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Microbiological Quality of Milk from Small Processing Units in Senegal

Consumption of milk and dairy products has increased significantly in Senegal in the last decade, and a large part of the local production comes from small processing units spread all over the country. We collected 85 bulk-tank milk samples from 68 smallholder dairy farms throughout the territory. Microbiological quality of milk samples was analyzed according to the official standards. Further, raw milk and pasteurized milk were screened for Mycobacterium bovis, Coxiella burnetii, and anti-Brucella abortus antibodies. Ninety-three percent of pasteurized milk samples, 92 per cent of rawmilk samples, and 81 per cent of sourmilk samples failed tomeet official standards. Pathogens detected in milk were C. burnetii (6=41, 15 per cent), which seems to be endemic in Senegal, coagulase-positive staphylococci (18=70, 26 per cent), and Salmonella Johannesburg in one sample. Further analysis of coagulase-positive staphylococci isolated from samples containing more than 104 colony-forming units per gram showed the presence of enterotoxigenic strains in 9 of the 10 samples. These results confirm the poor microbiological quality of milk produced by small units in Senegal, especially and surprisingly of pasteurized milk. This highlights the need to implement good hygiene practices, particularly in the postpasteurization process, and an effective monitoring throughout the production and delivery chain.