Microbial Examination of canned Meats


  • In case of suspected outbreaks of food poisoning of canned foods the normal laboratory procedures for isolation of the responsible organism (Salmonella, Staphylococcus, Clostridium, etc) are to be adopted and care to be taken in sampling, transport, etc., of the suspected food.
  • Where it is desired to control the safety and stability of large consignments of hermetically sealed containers of meat products, attention is directed to the standards of methods used at the point of production, viz., hygiene levels, temperature for heat treatment, water supply, etc., information on microbiological tests to detect botulism.
  • Examination of the quality of containers is important to ensure that there are no damaged, rusty, blown, etc., cans.
  • If the meat products in hermetically sealed containers is unsatisfactory and hence a reason for suspicion on the consignment sampling and inspection procedures should be adopted along the lines recommended by the Codex Alimentarius Commission (1983).
  • The number of samples to be taken is assessed according to the expected hazard and the laboratory facilities available in the case of shelf-stable canned products.
  • For non-shelf-stable products five containers are examined visually and their contents examined microbiologically.
  • Both aerobic and anaerobic techniques are undertaken, decisions as to rejection or approval being based on bacterial plate counts (Sampling and Inspection Procedures for Microbiological Examination of Meat Products in Hermetically Sealed Containers, Codex Alimentarius Commission of FAO/WHO 1983).
Last modified: Tuesday, 7 September 2010, 4:34 AM