Characterization of Physicochemical Properties and Microbiological Quality of Khmer Rice Vermicelli (Num Banhchok) Collected in Phnom Penh Capital, Cambodia
    1. Faculty of Chemical and Food Engineering, Institute of Technology of Cambodia, Russian Federation Blvd., P.O. Box 86, Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Received: September 15,2022 / Revised: Accepted: November 27,2022 / Published: June 30,2023

Download PDF
Browse Figures

Khmer rice vermicelli “Num Banhchok” is lightly fermented Cambodian rice noodles. Num Banhchok is commonly served as a breakfast noodle dish with curry soup or Khmer fish soup in the country. Food safety concerning microbiological contamination over Khmer rice vermicelli has escalated since the manufacturers and retailers lack hygiene practices with the family-scale of production. Here, this study aimed to assess the physicochemical properties and microbiological quality of Khmer rice vermicelli sold in markets in Phnom Penh city. Thirty Khmer rice vermicelli samples were collected from 11 wet markets such as Tom Nop, 7- Makara, Orussey, Kandal, Depo, Samaki, Kilo 4, Central, Toul Songkae, Olympic, and Kilo-7 markets. The physicochemical analysis, including pH, titratable acidity, moisture content, water activity (aw), and color of L* values were carried out, while total plate count (TPC), total yeast and mold count (TYMC), lactic acid bacteria (LAB), Enterobacteriaceae, total coliforms (TC), Escherichia coli (E. coli), Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus), and Bacillus cereus (B. cereus) were considered in microbiological analysis. The results showed that the values of pH, acidity, moisture content, water activity (aw), and color of L* values ranged from 3.78-4.35, 0.09- 0.19%, 68.07-76.07%, 0.9818-0.9883, and 64.16-73.94, individually. In terms of microbiological contamination, the samples were ranged with TPC (3.6-6.0 logs CFU/g), TYMC (3.3-5.5 logs CFU/g), LAB (2.9-4.9 logs CFU/g), Enterobacteriaceae (0.3-3.6 logs CFU/g), TC (0.4-3.6 logs CFU/g), E. coli (0.3-1.8 logs CFU/g), S. aureus (1.8-4.8 logs CFU/g), and B. cereus (1.9-4.8 logs CFU/g). The numerous microbial contaminants in Khmer rice vermicelli could be an indicator of the lack of sanitation by food handlers or producers, as well as poor environmental conditions in the production line and marketplaces affecting Khmer rice vermicelli quality.