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Aerobic Plate Count: Analysis on Food Microbiology

Aerobic Plate Count is designed to specify the amount of microorganism that is discovered in a sample. It is a way to monitor the safety and the freshness of the food. The standard in the level of microbial is produced by the FSA and the HDC that will guide the industry about the importance of microbiological testing.

Aerobic Plate Count Definition
Aerobic Plate Count may also be referred to as TAC (Total Aerobic Count) TVC (Total Viable Count) and TMC (Total Mesophilic Aerobic). It may precisely be defined as the process of quantifying the level of fungi and bacteria that can be cultured in a test sample that is exposed in oxygen and under 30-degree Celsius.  Contrary to what most of you believe, the APC does not necessarily account for the total population of the microorganism that is included in the representative sample.  HIGH APC can be directly associated with reduced shelf-life and quick spoilage of the product.

Aerobic Plate Count can be challenging to use as an indicator on the fresh produce.  This is due to the variety of results produced after the microbial analysis.  To pass this challenge, it is important to take logs of every count and utilise the number for the computation, and then the value will be diverted back to its normal scale by utilising antilog.

What Happens in Case There Is A Breach in Aerobic Plate Count Limit?
If there is a high level of Aerobic plate count, the manufacturer should act quickly since the contamination level in his industry is significant.  When the sample surpassed the aerobic plate count limit, the manufacturer is expected to do the following actions:

Increase the scope or level of the testing- In case the Aerobic plate count is suggesting that there is something wrong, there is a need for the manufacturer to understand the cause of the problem.  In order to do this, the manufacturer should increase the frequency of the analysis.  They should also test a myriad of possible sources such as water, products used, and others.

Risk Assessment- Risk that is associated with the aerobic plate count should also be assessed together with the current risk-assessment procedure and if necessary update the current risk assessment.

Take Action- The manufacturer should also take action that will reduce the risk of contamination in case it will surpass the aerobic plate count limit.  Practice and process should be altered in case it will have an impact in controlling the risk.

Notify Your Customer-Under the law of the UK surrounding the food safety, you are committing an offence if you are selling a product that has not met the requirement of the Food Safety standard.  There are some instances when it may be necessary for you to alert your customers about the high aerobic plate count.

Aerobic Plate count is necessary to determine the safety level and the quality of the food that the industry is offering. It is a way to ensure that the products are safe and not contaminated.
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