Salmonellosis is one of the main causes of foodborne illnesses worldwide, with outbreaks predominately linked to contamination of eggs and raw egg products, such as mayonnaise. This review explores previous studies that have investigated Salmonella control mechanisms utilized in the production of raw egg mayonnaise and other food products. Apart from the use of pasteurized eggs, the main control mechanism identified is the pH of the raw egg products, which plays an important role in the consistency and stability while affecting the survival of Salmonella spp. However, currently there is no consensus regarding the critical pH limit for the control of Salmonella. The effectiveness of pH as a control mechanism is influenced by the type of acid used, with the effectiveness of lemon juice compared with vinegar highly debated. Additionally, Salmonella susceptibility to pH stresses may also be influenced by storage temperature (in some studies refrigeration temperatures protected Salmonella spp. from acidulants) and is further complicated by the development of Salmonella cross-tolerance-induced responses, pH homeostasis achieved by the cellular antiport and symport systems, and acid tolerance response (ATR). These mechanisms all provide Salmonella with an added advantage to ensure survival under various pH conditions. Other confounding factors include the fat content, and the addition of NaCl, garlic and plant essential oils (PEOs) from mint, cinnamon, cardamom and clove.
Keywords: NaCl; Salmonella spp.; fat content; garlic; mayonnaise; oils; pH; raw egg products; salmonellosis.