Contamination Sources in Tarhana for Food Safety
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The origin of tarhana word is from Central Asia and Persian. Tarhana is a very important indigenous food produced by lactic acid fermentation of a mixture, which is prepared from flours or wheat, yoghurt, red or green pepper, salt, onion, tomato and different kinds of spices. Depending on demand, yeast can also be used for the development of fermentation in tarhana production. After fermentation this mixture is dried, ground and stored on a shelf for future use. The chemical composition of Tarhana varies depending on the raw material and region used. Composition of Tarhana has been detected as pH 6.19, average humidity 8.38%, ash 0.64%, salt 3.86%, protein 10.53%, acidity grade 2.92, total phenolic substance 205.91 mg GAE / g, antioxidant activity 8.07% by some researchers. Tarhana is exposed to microbiological, toxicological and cross contaminations in terms of the food used and the process steps followed during construction. Personal contamination is the most important cross-contamination source. Mold contamination, which occurred in flour and spices during storage, is the other important contamination source. On the other hand, microbial contamination of milk, which is used for yoghurt production is a risk for tarhana. During drying stage of the product, rodents, birds and pests can cause contamination. In this review, the determination of contamination sources and prevention of this risk in tarhana production has been discussed.