Hygiena, a producer of microbial testing solutions for food safety purposes, recently launched its SalQuant™ testing protocol as part of its BAX® System. The Bax System SalQuant approach was created to meet increased demand for Salmonella quantification in food products and serve as an alternative to traditional, time-consuming methods.
For decades, the most probable number (MPN) approach has been used to quantify the presence of pathogens in food samples at low concentrations, as well as to identify colonies of organisms based on their appearance on agar plates. However, MPN is a tedious and expensive process due to the need to conduct multiple analytical tests per sample.
Recently, scientists have realized that real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT PCR) testing methods can provide reliable concentration data for low-concentration organisms in food microbiology. The Hygiena BAX System leverages RT PCR methods to detect bacterial contamination in food matrices. The BAX System SalQuant approach correlates amplification signal data from the BAX System RT PCR Assay for Salmonella with statistical models to provide Salmonella concentration results for a sample. The BAX SalQuant approach offers several advantages over MPN, including:
- Higher sensitivity
- Faster results (approximately 24 hours)
- Fewer false positives
- Lower cost.
Prior to the advent of RT PCR methods in concentration testing, MPN was the only way to test for Salmonella levels in a sample. Now, Hygiena’s BAX System SalQuant approach can be used to test for Salmonella in many common beef, pork, and poultry matrices.