Ever-increasing public interest and concern over food safety, as well as commercial pressure to improve food quality and extend product shelf life, have greatly increased the responsibility and accountability of all those involved in the microbiological examination of foods and food-related samples.In order to maintain the consistently high standards of laboratory practice that are required in food microbiology, all staff must be suitably trained to understand what they are to do, how they are to do it and why they must do it in a prescribed way. Properly trained laboratory staff are a valuable asset, whether they work in a food industry, public health, research or contract testing laboratory, and they make a significant contribution to the reliability of the results obtained from microbiological examinations of food samples.This book is an essential training aid and reference for all trainees in food microbiology laboratories, as well as their teachers, their trainers and all those attending food microbiology training courses. It provides an up-to-date, comprehensive working knowledge of all areas of basic food microbiology, with particular focus and emphasis on laboratory-based, practical aspects. Information and comment is provided on:- groups of microorganisms of importance in food microbiology,- factors affecting the growth, survival and death of microorganisms in foods,- food spoilage, food-borne illness and food preservation,- applications of microbiology in the food industry,- laboratory design, equipment, operation and practice,- laboratory accreditation, performance monitoring and systems for documentation,- use of laboratory equipment, basic techniques and obtaining samples,- conventional methods for microbiological examination, - confirmation tests and how they work, and- an introduction to 'alternative' microbiological methods.Each topic is accompanied by further information sources that will help in the development of high standards for the next and future generations of practical food microbiologists. Provides a fully up-to-date working knowledge of all aspects of food microbiology with a particular focus on practical laboratory aspects. Focuses on laboratory methodology and how to get good results.