Review of Microbiological Limits in Food

August 20, 2014 at 8:07 AM

Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) is undertaking a full review of microbiological limits in food.

The review is considering recent scientific evidence and the development of preventative measures throughout the food chain, including food safety standards and primary production and processing standards.

The first stage, which is now complete, looked at limits for Listeria monocytogenes in ready-to-eat (RTE) foods​.

FSANZ assessed whether existing criteria were consistent with associated guidance material and whether the criteria aligned with international standards. References to prescribed methods of analysis in the standard were also updated.


The changes were gazetted on 31 July 2014. Read Standard 1.6.1

Next stage of the review

The next stage of the review will look at what microbiological criteria are required in food safety management and for what purpose. For example, microbiological criteria may be established to:

  • determine the safety of a lot of food (food safety criteria)

  • verify if a food safety system or a processing step is working (process hygiene criteria).

This approach will support the through-chain requirements in Chapters 3 and 4 of the Code and take into account existing guideline criteria e.g. criteria in the Guide to Standard 1.6.1 and Guidelines for the microbiological examination of ready-to-eat foods.

FSANZ will release a consultation paper outlining the approach and guiding principles for this work in late 2014.


To keep up to date on proposed changes see: Review of Microbiological Limits

Tags: Microbiological Limits in Food
Category: News



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