Mexican-style raw meat sausages (chorizos) are not regulated in California when they are produced in small ethnic food markets. These sausages are sold uncooked, but their formulation imparts a color that may lead the consumer to assume that they are already cooked, and thus the chorizos may sometimes be eaten without proper cooking. If pathogens are present in such cases, illness may result.
Survival of Salmonella and Escherichia coli O157:H7 in chorizos was evaluated under different storage conditions selected based on an initial survey of uninspected chorizos in California. The results, printed in the Journal of Food Protection, should provide a scientific basis for guidelines given to producers of uninspected chorizo and should reduce the probability of foodborne illness associated with these products.