Harmful microorganisms in food can cause deterioration of human health, poisoning and in some cases even death. Especially fresh meat and chicken products create a suitable environment for the growth of microorganisms in terms of the nutrients it contains, water activity and pH level. For this reason, detection of microorganisms in meat products is an important issue in terms of food safety and human health.
In this project, it is aimed to detect live microorganisms in meat products, especially chicken meat, in a simple, non-destructive, non-contact and fast way using laser speckle method. Laser speckle images of healthy and stale chicken meat were taken, contrast parameter and correlation analysis of the obtained patterns were made. It was observed that the contrast parameter for staled chicken meat increased by approximately 3 times compared to fresh chicken. This increase provides an understanding of the difference between contaminated chicken and fresh chicken. Speckle density changes over time in relation to the movements of living microorganisms. Thus, the correlation in laser speckle density patterns taken from contaminated tissues is disrupted. In the measurements taken with photodiode, by analyzing the change of light intensity of the speckle patterns on fresh and contaminated tissues over time, the detection of microorganisms was made easier and more precisely without the need for image processing.
The proposed measurement system is a new method that detects meat contamination with laser speckle imaging. It can be developed and made portable and can be used easily in homes. Since it is a simple, non-destructive and fast method, it can be used to determine the shelf life of meat in food distribution places and markets. In addition, it has the potential to be calibrated and used for other food products other than meat products. The system developed with this study is cheap and easy to use, and the laser speckle imaging method is used in a different field other than biomedical, contributing to the literature.