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Why is there a microbe concern if product is to be cooked?

pathogen microbes

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#1 Anki


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Posted 29 June 2014 - 11:10 PM

In grain processing facilities, dry cleaning is the most common method of maintaining hygiene. Since regular sanitation of machines is not part of the process, I often worry about microbes. During my conversation with experienced folks during meetings & audits, I often hear them saying that product is going to cooked at high enough time & temperatures, why worry too much? 


Even though product is going to be cooked, I argue that product should not have microbes or pathogens because this product will share space with other ready to eat products on the shelves and may become the cause of cross contamination.


Do you guys have any other rational for having low microbial level or absence of pathogen for not ready to eat products like grains?

#2 Avila


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Posted 30 June 2014 - 03:19 AM

Dear Anki,

Non RTE products should be separated from RTE ones to avoid cross contamination

Did you do risk assesment for microbial hazard? If yes, what are your control measures?

Some spore forming bacterias found in non RTE dry products (eg. grains) that's why need further thermal process before consumed (it was stated on your HACCP manual).

Whatever your products are and how do you produce them , SSOP should be implemented properly


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#3 Charles.C


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Posted 30 June 2014 - 02:25 PM

Do you guys have any other rational for having low microbial level or absence of pathogen for not ready to eat products like grains?

Dear Anki,


Well, i suppose one does hope that the finished product meets its (rational?) specification ?.


From a consumer's POV and personal experience, cooking can be surprisingly ineffective at neutralising large doses of pathogens unless the recipients are willing to feast on rubber and charcoal. Even then the toxins may get them. :smile:


A similar comment to the above is also often heard regarding to-be-canned goods. i normally direct the speakers to official canning SOPs  which usually include a short, un-emphasised, comment something like "the safety of the recommended conditions assumes a microbiological load  commensurate with typical commercial quality."


Due diligence at all times. :smile:


Rgds / Charles.C

Kind Regards,



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#4 Mr. Incognito

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Posted 30 June 2014 - 02:47 PM

Anki I'm not sure what product your producing but you also have to look at the food safety characteristics of the product.


If you are working with something like flour it's important to remember what the water activity of the product is.  If the water activity is low there isn't much of a chance for a great amount of mico-organism proliferation.  Typically with something like that it is cooked after mixing so there is a kill step.


If you are worried that your product will be next to a RTE product consider that an RTE product has to be well packaged so that nothing can get inside of the package. 


If you are worried about testing you could do environmental sampling on non-food contact areas (Zone 2 / Zone 3) to look for possible contamination risks.  Also you GMP's with hand washing and sanitation requirements should assist with keeping potential microbiological risks low.


Mr. Incognito


Mr. Incognito is a cool frood who can travel the width and breadth of the galaxy and still know where his towel is.

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