Category Archives: Brochothrix thermosphacta

Research – Microbiological safety of aged meat



The impact of dry-ageing of beef and wet-ageing of beef, pork and lamb on microbiological hazards and spoilage bacteria was examined and current practices are described. As ‘standard fresh’ and wet-aged meat use similar processes these were differentiated based on duration. In addition to a description of the different stages, data were collated on key parameters (time, temperature, pH and aw) using a literature survey and questionnaires.

The microbiological hazards that may be present in all aged meats included Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli(STEC),Salmonella spp., Staphylococcus aureus, Listeria monocytogenes, enterotoxigenic Yersinia spp., Campylobacter spp. and Clostridium spp. Moulds, such as Aspergillus spp. and Penicillium spp., may produce mycotoxins when conditions are favourable but may be prevented by ensuring a meat surface temperature of−0.5 to 3.0°C, with a relative humidity (RH) of 75–85% and an airflow of 0.2–0.5 m/s for up to 35 days.

The main meat spoilage bacteria include Pseudomonas spp., Lactobacillus spp. Enterococcus spp., Weissella spp., Brochothrix spp., Leuconostoc spp. Lactobacillus spp., Shewanella spp. and Clostridium spp. Undercurrent practices, the ageing of meat may have an impact on the load of microbiological hazards and spoilage bacteria as compared to standard fresh meat preparation. Ageing under defined and controlled conditions can achieve the same or lower loads of microbiological hazards and spoilage bacteria than the variable log10increases predicted during standard fresh meat preparation. An approach was used to establish the conditions of time and temperature that would achieve similar or lower levels of L. monocytogenes and Yersinia enterocolitica (pork only) and lactic acid bacteria(representing spoilage bacteria) as compared to standard fresh meat. Finally, additional control activities were identified that would further assure the microbial safety of dry-aged beef, based on recommended best practice and the outputs of the equivalence assessment.

Research – Exploring the Diversity of Biofilm Formation by the Food Spoiler Brochothrix thermosphacta



Brochothrix thermosphacta is considered as a major spoiler of meat and seafood products. This study explores the biofilm formation ability and the biofilm structural diversity of 30 multi-origin B. thermosphacta strains using a set of complementary biofilm assays (biofilm ring test, crystal violet staining, and confocal laser scanning microscopy). Two major groups corresponding to low and high biofilm producers were identified. High biofilm producers presented flat architectures characterized by high surface coverage, high cell biovolume, and high surface area.

Research – Fighting Foodborne Pathogens with Natural Antimicrobials

Mirage News

The food industry has now started exploring natural alternatives for preserving food to reduce the dependency on chemical preservatives, some of which are linked to obesity and metabolic syndrome. Specifically, natural antimicrobials produced by plants and microorganisms like bacteria and fungi can kill food-borne pathogens like Salmonella Typhimurium, Escherichia coliListeria monocytogenes and Clostridium botulinum and also food spoilage bacteria like Brochothrix thermosphactaLactobacillus spp., Bacillus spp. and Weissella spp., among others. Foodborne pathogens and spoilage microbes pose a serious health concern for consumers and destroy the appearance, texture and sensory characteristics of the food, affecting the food industry and consumers alike.

Research – Microbiome population dynamics of cold smoked sockeye salmon during refrigerated storage and after culture enrichment 

Journal of Food Protection

Cold smoked salmon is a ready-to-eat seafood product of high commercial importance. The processing and storage steps facilitate the introduction, growth and persistence of foodborne pathogens and spoilage bacteria. The growth of commensal bacteria during storage and once the product is opened also influence the quality and safety of cold smoked salmon. Here we investigated the microbial community through targeted 16s rRNA gene and shotgun metagenomic sequencing, as means to better understand the interactions among bacteria in cold smoked salmon. Cold smoked salmon samples were tested over 30 days of aerobic storage at 4℃ and cultured at each timepoint in buffered Listeria enrichment broth (BLEB) commonly used to detect Listeria in foods. The microbiomes were comprised of Firmicutes and Proteobacteria namely, Carnobacterium , Brochothrix , Pseudomonas , Serratia , and Psychrobacter . Pseudomonas species were the most diverse species with 181 taxa identified. Additionally, we identified potential homologs to 10 classes of bacteriocins in microbiomes of cold smoked salmon stored at 4°C and corresponding BLEB culture enrichments. The findings presented here contribute to our understanding of microbiome population dynamics in cold smoked salmon, including changes in bacterial taxa during aerobic cold storage and after culture enrichment.  This may facilitate improvements to pathogen detection and quality preservation of this food.

Research – Impact of a Combination of UV-C Irradiation and Peracetic Acid Spray Treatment on Brochothrix thermosphacta and Yersinia enterocolitica Contaminated Pork


Efficient ways of decontamination are needed to minimize the risk of infections with Yersinia (Y.) enterocolitica, which causes gastrointestinal diseases in humans, and to reduce the numbers of Brochothrix (B.) thermosphacta to extend the shelf-life of meat. While many studies have focused on a single treatment of peracetic acid (PAA) or UV-C-irradiation, there are no studies about a combined treatment on meat. Therefore, in the present study, pork was inoculated with either Y. enterocolitica or B. thermosphacta, and was treated with a combination of 2040 mJ/cm2 UV-C irradiation followed by a 2000 ppm PAA spray treatment (30 s). Samples were packed under modified atmosphere and stored for 1, 7, or 14 days. The samples were examined for Y. enterocolitica and B. thermosphacta content, chemical and sensory effects, and meat quality parameters. For Y. enterocolitica, a significant reduction of up to 2.16 log10 cfu/cm2 meat and for B. thermosphacta, up to 2.37 log10 cfu/cm2 meat was seen on day 14 after UV-C/PAA treatment compared to the untreated controls.