Bacteria And Its Effects On Food

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Microorganisms found in food can be divided into 4 sub categories: Desirable, spoilage, indicator and pathogenic (Hocking 2003). Desirable organisms have a trait in which they inhibit activity of undesired bacteria and are considered organoleptically attractive – attractive to human senses (Hocking 2003). For example, the bacteria involved and needed for fermentation in cheeses. Spoilage organisms detract the food from being consumed and are only a concern if consumed in large amounts which can cause illness or gastrointestinal disturbances (Hocking 2003). Indicator organisms are non-pathogens which indicate whether there has been contamination present, i.e. organisms which are present in areas which they are not desirable (Hocking 2003). For example, the presence of Faecal coliforms in food. Pathogenic organisms are ones which disturb the gastrointestinal tract and can cause disease even with in certain cases with low infective doses (Hocking 2003). They usually can come about from ingesting pre-formed toxins or from toxin produced in the intestine after being consumed (Hocking 2003). Preformed toxins usually have a shorten incubation time while longest when infection occurs (Hocking 2003). An example can be Staphylococcus aureus which while found normal to be found in skin flora in large numbers and certain areas it can be determined as a pathogen. Most developed countries around the world have implementations in place that ensure that the preparation, transportation,
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