What is it about?

We wanted to investigate the quality and safety of fresh romaine lettuce accessible to populations that live in low socioeconomic areas (also called food deserts) in Houston, TX. We purchased lettuce from five low- and 5 high-socioeconomic areas and did microbial testing to identify spoilage microorganisms and bacteria that can make people sick, also called pathogens. Lettuce obtained from food deserts showed a higher number of pathogens and spoilage bacteria.

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Why is it important?

Where you live should not determine whether or not you have access to safe and high quality food.


My hope is that this article starts a conversation regarding our food supply system and why these disparities exist.

Sujata Sirsat
University of Houston

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Safety and Quality of Romain Lettuce Accessible to Low Socioeconomic Populations Living in Houston, TX, Journal of Food Protection, August 2021, International Association for Food Protection,
DOI: 10.4315/jfp-21-250.
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