Microbiological challenge testing - Guide
Microbiological challenge testing is the laboratory simulation of what can happen microbiologically to a product during distribution and subsequent handling if it were to be contaminated with a microorganism. The use of challenge testing to assess product safety and stability has increased over the past few years, particularly with respect to Clostridium botulinum and Listeria monocytogenes, where evidence is required to demonstrate that there is minimal potential for growth of these organisms throughout shelf–life.
A new guideline (Challenge testing protocols for assessing the safety and quality of food and drink – Guideline No. 63) contains the necessary information for companies wishing to follow a standardised protocol for challenge testing their food products.
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