microbiology in food safety welcome

Microbiology in food safety welcome

Microbiology is the study of microscopic plants and animals and this includes bacteria, moulds and yeast. The most important micro-organisms of interest to the food industry are bacteria, and bacteriology is the study of bacteria. If the food handlers are to understand food safety and how prevent food poisoning, they must have some understanding of basic bacteriology.

Bacteria are single-celled micro-organisms which re found everywhere: on raw food and people, in soil, air and water. A micro-organisms  is an organism that is so small it can only be seen under a powerful microscope. Most bacteria are harmless and some are essential, for example, for breaking down decaying matter. Others are of benefit to the food industry, for example, in the manufacture of cheese and yogurt. Unfortunately a small number of bacteria cause food spoilage and others,  known as pathogens, cause illness including foods poisoning.

Commensals are bacteria which live on or in the body with out causing illness. Most bacteria on the body are commensals and are part of the normal flora. For example, some species of staphylococcus are found on skin and in the mouth or nose. Other species are transient and may cause skin infections, such as boils. If harmful species of staphylococcus are transferred to high-risk food, they may cause illness.

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