E. coli in tea

In this study, the persistence of toxigenic Escherichia coli (E. coli ) on dried chamomile, peppermint, ginger, cinnamon, black and green teas stored under 4, 10, and 25°C was determined.

 The E. coli survival rate in ginger and cinnamon teas decreased below 0 on Day 5. In the other tested teas, E. coli survivability showed a downward trend over time, but never dropped to 0. Chamomile tea retained the greatest population of viable E. coli . Meanwhile, die‐off of E. coli was higher at 25°C compared to lower temperatures. Additionally, fate of E. coli during brewing at 60, 70 and 80°C was evaluated.

The E. coli population was reduced to below 2 Log colony forming units (CFU)/g after 1 min at 80°C, At the same time, the E. coli survival at 60°C was higher than that at 70°C in all tested teas. The data indicated that if E. coli survives after storage of prepared teas, it may also survive and grow after the brewing process, especially if performed using temperatures <80°C. Finally, we analyzed the correlations between temperature, time, tea varieties and E. coli survival, and successfully constructed a random forest regression model. The results of this study can be used to predict changes in E. coli during storage and fate during the brewing process. Results will form the basis of undertaking a risk assessment.

Survival of toxigenic Escherichia coli on chamomile, peppermint, green, black, ginger, and cinnamon teas during storage and brewing, 23 June 2020

Journal of Food Safety

Yanan Liu, Fan Wu, Yan Zhu, Yirui Chen, Kayla Murray, Zhaoxin Lu, Keith Warriner



And the tea lady is featured here.

The Crimson Permanent Assurance (Monty Python’s) from EpicFilmsGlobal on Vimeo.

Salmonella in tea? It survives brewing?

Amy has this ritual where she has peppermint tea at night.

This will not make her happy, although I suspect the risk is negligible.

The survival of Salmonella on dried chamomile flowers, peppermint leaves, and green tea leaves stored under different conditions was examined.

peppermint.teaSurvival and growth of Salmonella was also assessed after subsequent brewing using dried inoculated teas.

A Salmonella enterica serovar cocktail was inoculated onto different dried tea leaves or flowers to give starting populations of approximately 10 log CFU/g. The inoculum was allowed to dry (at ambient temperature for 24 h) onto the dried leaves or flowers prior to storage under 25 and 35°C at low (<30% relative humidity [RH]) and high (>90% RH) humidity levels. Under the four storage conditions tested, survival followed the order 25°C with low RH > 35°C with low RH > 25°C with high RH > 35°C with high RH. Salmonella losses at 25°C with low RH occurred primarily during drying, after which populations showed little decline over 6 months. In contrast, Salmonella decreased below detection after 45 days at 35°C and high RH in all teas tested. The thermal resistance of Salmonella was assessed at 55°C immediately after inoculation of tea leaves or flowers, after drying (24 h) onto tea leaves or flowers, and after 28 days of storage at 25°C with low RH. All conditions resulted in similar D-values (2.78 ± 0.12, 3.04 ± 0.07, and 2.78 ± 0.56, at 0 h, 24 h, and 28 days, respectively), indicating thermal resistance of Salmonella in brewed tea did not change after desiccation and 28 days of storage.

In addition, all brewed teas tested supported the growth of Salmonella. If Salmonella survives after storage, it may also survive and grow after a home brewing process.

 Survival of Salmonella on chamomile, peppermint, and green tea during storage and subsequent survival or growth following tea brewing

Journal of Food Protection®, Number 4, April 2015, pp. 636-858, pp. 661-667(7)

Keller, Susanne E.; Stam, Christina N.; Gradl, Dana R.; Chen, Zhengzai; Larkin, Emily L.; Pickens, Shannon R.; Chirtel, Stuart J.



Canadian backpacker dies after ‘drinking tea in Peru shaman ceremony that caused her to vomit until she passed out’

A 32-year-old Canadian woman died as she drank tea at a Peru shaman ceremony. 

255C1D4400000578-2941085-image-a-1_1423143920090Jennifer Logan of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan was backpacking through the country when she had a fatal medical reaction as she drank tea designed to make people vomit, purge and cleanse the body at a rainforest retreat on January 17.

She had to be taken by motorcycle and then boat to the nearest hospital, but she could not be revived by doctors, who say the woman died of a pulmonary edema.

Amy Logan, the victim’s youngest sister who recently traveled to Peru with her mother to retrieve her sister’s remains, told CBC; ‘We suspect the tea had a role.’

Officers have examined the cup Ms. Logan drank out of and the jug while also conducting interviews with staff  as they investigate the death.

Ms. Logan’s sister explained that the participants at the two week long all-female retreat at the Canto Luz Centre outside Puerto Maldonado were each given tea to drink.

Did Salmonella in tea help those stars trim up for Oscars?

Watching the iconized stars walk the red carpet at the Oscars after their cayenne, lemon and tea detox to squeeze into those outfits I wonder: how many lost weight using the barf-from Salmonella diet?

Yesterday the Canadian Food Inspection Agency warned folks not to consume certain Tega brand Organic Lemon Hibiscus Green Rooibos Herbal Tea because it may be contaminated with Salmonella.

Today, CFIA added Murchie’s Lemon Drop Tea and Co-Op Gold Organic Pomegranate White Tea to the list.

Would Salmonella survive the tea-making process? Probably not. Is cross contamination a risk when handling a tea bag? Probably yes.