Salad dressing spoilage by Bacillus amyloliquefaciens with gas formation

Abstract B. amyloliquefaciens is a Gram-positive, aerobic, motile rod, often found in soil, which has been described as a plant growth promoter and is used in several industrial processes. This study reports an episode involving the gassy spoilage of salad dressing caused by B. amyloliquefaciens in a production facility located in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Nine B. amyloliquefaciens strains were isolated from spoiled salad dressings, the sugar used as a raw material in the manufacture and from the production plant. A genotypic analysis of the isolates by Rep-PCR generated eight band profiles grouped in five Rep-PCR clusters. When re-inoculated into fresh salad dressing three B. amyloliquefaciens isolates belonging to the Rep-PCR clusters A, D and E were able to reproduce the gassy spoilage process, whereas the isolates belonging to the Rep-PCR clusters B and C did not produce any visible spoilage, suggesting that these isolates were not directly involved in the spoilage process. The predominant Rep-PCR cluster, cluster A, included strains isolated from barbecue and passion fruit seed salad dressings and from sugar (raw material), suggesting it is a common source of contamination for such salad dressings.