TURKISH JOURNAL OF AGRICULTURE AND FORESTRY, vol.33, no.5, pp.445-454, 2009 (SCI-Expanded)
The physico-chemical and microbiological properties of wheat flour samples (type 650) obtained from 7 different locations in the Thrace region (Turkey) were assessed. Totally 142 wheat flour samples were analysed physicochemically in terms of ash, moisture, fat acidity, and protein amounts, and microbiologically in terms of total mesophilic aerobic bacteria (TMAB), Escherichia coli, Bacillus cereus, Clostridium perfringens, moulds, rope-spore counts, and Salmonella spp. In the physico-chemical parameters investigated, only the ash levels of flour samples were higher than the limit laid down in the Turkish Food Codex and Codex Alimentarius. In some locations, the levels of TMAB, E. coli, and rope spores were found to be higher than the legal limits in Turkish legislation. On the other hand, the differences among investigated areas were significant physico-chemically in terms of ash, moisture, fat acidity, and protein parameters, and microbiologically in terms of TMAB, E. coli, C. perfringens, and moulds (P < 0.05). It is concluded that the physico-chemical and microbiological properties of flours sampled at various collection points were variable and in some locations their microbiological properties did not fulfil the legal requirements.