The global food market is constantly changing, from milder and more sustainable processing technologies to clean label products and plant-based ingredients and dairy alternatives. These trends create new challenges for producing safe, high-quality and taste ingredients and finished food. NIZO’s multidisciplinary capabilities can help you protect your products and brands. We ensure we have the most up-to-date knowledge about microbiological hygiene, as well as residues and chemical contaminants that may be found in milk, dairy products and dairy alternatives.
Listeria monocytogenes in cheese; a model to determine the concentrations of undissociated lactic acid in cheese and to predict complete growth inhibition.
Predicting the risk of Listeria monocytogenes outgrowth, especially for ready-to-eat foods and drinks
Listeria is a constant concern for the food industry and for regulators, as it can cause the serious illness listeriosis. While this pathogen is inactivated by heating, there is still a risk that it can contaminate a finished product post-processing, for instance upon contact with processing equipment, transportation belts, or during slicing, filling, packaging, etc. It is critical to understand whether and how the food product you are developing can support the growth of Listeria – especially for ready-to-eat products that are generally not heated before consumption. The microbiological criteria for release are very strict for ready-to-eat products, but even more so when the product can support Listeria monocytogenes growth.
In addition, when L. monocytogenes is encountered in production environments, it is crucial to tailor your preventive measures to the specific sub-species. NIZO can characterise sub-species with the highest level of resolution.
By modelling the inactivation and growth of Listeria monocytogenes, NIZO can determine whether the product you are developing is at risk to support the growth of the pathogen – before you finalise your process and formulation. And we can validate your Listeria bio-protection system to ensure that it is robust enough to meet market requirements.