Abstract

Giardia and Cryptosporidium are recognized as leading causes of waterborne and foodborne diarrhoeal disease with worldwide distribution. The study aimed to determine the protozoan contamination of various foods of plant origin. A total of 72 samples from 27 different varieties of fresh vegetables and fruits were collected from supermarkets and open markets in North-Western Greece and were examined using conventional diagnostic methods. Two out of 72 (2.8%) samples were found positive for Cryptosporidium oocysts, while no sample was found to be positive for Giardia cysts. The results show the presence of protozoan contamination in foods of plant origin, which may constitute a potential health hazard.

Highlights

  • Determination of Cryptosporidium and Giardia in various foods of plant origin.

  • Fresh vegetables and fruits from supermarkets and open markets

  • 2.8% samples were found positive for Cryptosporidium oocysts.

  • The protozoan may constitute a public health risk through contamination of fresh vegetables.

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