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Evaluation of a Predictive Model for Clostridium perfringens Growth during Cooling

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Proper temperature control is essential in minimizing Clostridium perfringens germination, growth, and toxin production. The U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service offers two options for the cooling of meat products: follow a standard time-temperature schedule or validate that alternative cooling regimes result in no more than a 1-log CFU/ g increase of C. perfringens and no growth of Clostridium botulinum. The Juneja 1999 model for C. perfringens growth during cooling may be helpful in determining whether the C. perfringens performance standard has been achieved, but this model has not been extensively validated. The objective of this study was to validate the Juneja 1999 model under a variety of temperature situations. The Juneja 1999 model for C. perfringens growth during cooling is fail safe when low (<1 log CFU/ ml) or high (>3 log CFU/ml) observed increases occur during exponential cooling. The Juneja 1999 model consistently underpredicted growth at intermediate observed increases (1 to 3 log CFU/ml). The Juneja 1999 model also underpredicted growth whenever exponential cooling took place at two different rates in the first and second portions of the cooling process. This error may be due to faster than predicted growth of C. perfringens cells during cooling or to an inaccuracy in the Juneja 1999 model.


Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Food Risk Analysis Initiative, 65 Dudley Road, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, New Brunswick, New Jersey 08901-8520, USA

Publication date: June 1, 2004

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    The Journal of Food Protection (JFP) is a refereed monthly publication. Each issue contains scientific research and authoritative review articles reporting on a variety of topics in food science pertaining to food safety and quality. The Journal is internationally recognized as the leading publication in the field of food microbiology with a readership exceeding 11,000 scientists from 70 countries. The Journal of Food Protection is indexed in Index Medicus, Current Contents, BIOSIS, PubMed, Medline, and many others.

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