This study was carried out in order to determine the disinfectant effect of Methylated spirit® (95% methanol and 5% ethanol) as a teat dip against Listeria species. Hand milking was employed to collect 576 (288 x 2) raw milk samples from different lactating cows within Sokoto metropolis (Nigeria). 288 samples were collected before disinfecting the udder teats with Methylated spirit®, while the other 288 were collected after disinfection with Methylated spirit®. The samples were analyzed using selective culture and isolation technique in which the 288 samples collected before disinfection, 114 (39.6%) were positive for Listeria species. Among the positive samples 44 (38.6%) were Listeria innocua, 16 (14.0%) Listeria ivanovii, 36 (31.6%) Listeria monocytogenes, 11 (9.6%) Listeria welshimeri and 7 (6.1%) Listeria seeligeri, while none of the 288 samples collected after disinfection was positive. The study has shown high prevalence of Listeria species in milk collected without washing/disinfecting the teats and has also established the sensitivity of Listeria species to methylated ethanol which can be used as dip for disinfecting udder teats before milking in order to prevent contamination with Listeria species and other methylated spirit-sensitive organisms. This study is essential to educate Fulani herdsmen and other milk handlers on the importance of disinfecting udder teats before milking.
Raw milk, Disinfection, Methylated ethanol, Listeria monocytogenes, Public health