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Comparison of the SimPlate Total Plate Count Method with Petrifilm, Redigel, and Conventional Pour-Plate Methods for Enumerating Aerobic Microorganisms in Foods

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The SimPlate Total Plate Count (TPC) method, developed by IDEXX Laboratories, Inc., is designed to determine the most probable number of aerobic microorganisms in foods. The 24-h test was compared to the conventional plate count agar (PCA) method, the Petrifilm Aerobic Count plates, and the Redigel Total Count procedure for enumerating microflora in 751 food samples. Results using the SimPlate TPC method were highly correlated (r ≥ 0.96) with results from other test methods. Slopes (0.96–0.97) were not significantly different from 1, and y intercepts (−0.03–0.08) were not different from O. The SimPlate has a high counting range (>1600 most probable number per single dilution), thus requiring fewer dilutions of samples compared to other methods evaluated. Some foods, e.g., raw liver, wheat flour, and nuts, contain enzymes that gave false-positive reactions on SimPlates. Overall, however, the SimPlate TPC method is a suitable alternative to conventional PCA, Petrifilm, and Redigel methods for estimating populations of mesophilic aerobic microorganisms in a wide range of foods.

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Center for Food Safety and Quality Enhancement, University of Georgia, Griffin, Georgia 30223-1797, USA 2: Goldkist Research Laboratory, 2050 Highway 15 South, Sumter, South Carolina 29150, USA 3: Silliker Laboratories, 160 Armory Drive, Chicago, Illinois 60473, USA 4: Perdue Farms, Inc., P.O. Box 5909, Dothan, Alabama 46402-5909, USA 5: Bob Evan's Farms, Inc., 3776 South High Street, Columbus, Ohio 43207-0863, USA 6: Genoa Sausage, 14 Industrial Parkway, Woburn, Massachusetts 01801, USA 7: IDEXX Laboratories, Inc., One IDEXX Drive, Westbrook, Maine 04092-2041, USA

Publication date: 1998-01-01

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