This research project aims to develop a user friendly software tool to describe the behaviour of C. perfringens during heating/cooling of meats.
<p>This project will aim to provide information on the physiology of C. perfringens by developing a dynamic model for the thermal death and growth of C. perfringens, validating the predictive models under fluctuating temperatures and delivering a user friendly software tool to describe the kinetic behaviour of C. perfringens during heating/cooling of bulked meats.
C. perfringens is frequently associated with gastroenteritis in humans and between 1992 and 1999, 13% of foodborne outbreaks in England and Wales were attributed to this organism, although this is known to be an underestimate of the true burden of illness.
<p>The organism is commonly found in low numbers in many foods, especially in meat and poultry.
It is known to be associated with foods prepared in bulk where there are inadequate cooling facilities for cooked foods.
Slow cooling may allow germination of spores that have survived cooking and rapid multiplication of the organism to an infectious dose.
<p>The Agency commissioned this research to further our understanding of the physiology and behaviour of C. perfringens.
The final report, "<a href="http://www.foodbase.org.uk/results.php?f_report_id=31" target="_new">Improved Control of Clostridium perfringens</a>" is available at Foodbase, an open access repository of the <acronym title="Food Standards Agency">FSA</acronym>.
<p>Find more about this project and other FSA food safety-related projects at the <a href="http://www.food.gov.uk/science/research/" target="_blank">Food Standards Agency Research webpage</a>.