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Evaluation of Biocontrol as a Barrier Against Microbial Toxicity

Skinner, Guy
National Center for Food Safety & Technology
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The objective of this project was to evaluate the use of biocontrol or biological competition to serve as a secondary barrier against toxin production by Clostridium botulinum in extended shelf life refrigerated foods possessing a pH greater than 4.6.
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Processors are seeking additional barriers to incorporate into extended shelf life refrigerated foods to increase their safety in case of exposure to temperature abuse. Lactic acid producing microorganisms have the potential for serving as an additional protective barrier in foods that currently utilize refrigeration as their only protection against microbial growth and/or toxin production.

The experiments indicated that if an appropriate lactic acid producing bacteria was found for a specific food system application using appropriate experimental methods, that the microorganism may be able to serve as a secondary barrier in extended shelf life refrigerated foods against C. botulinum formation under conditions of temperature abuse.

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