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Microbial Spoilers in Food 2013
1-2-3 July - Quimper

Conference Topics


Biodiversity of microbial food spoilers

Food spoilers diversity is rich and complex. Indeed, these super foes correspond to various taxonomical groups going from prokaryotes (Gram negative and positive bacteria) to unicellular (yeasts) and pluricellular eukaryotes (molds).  While in some cases spoilage is directly linked to a given species, in other cases an association of microorganisms is observed.  Moreover, a metabolic trait associated with spoilage can be strain-dependent.  To strike back against these invaders, the first line of defense corresponds to better knowledge of their taxomical position and metabolic activities.

This topic will be part of session 1 on Monday the 1st of July


Characterization methodologies, enumeration methods for quality indicators

What are the existing methods for spoilers characterization, detection and enumeration from raw materials to final products, as well as in environmental samples? How to track these foes to better prevent food spoilage? Are they far behind the pathogens in terms of innovative methodologies and alternative methods? What are the current advances in this field?

This topic will be part of session 2 on Monday the 1st of July


Spoiler behaviour, fitness and functional properties

Microbial food spoilage causes high economical losses. While bacteria are responsible for rapid spoilage of high protein food products, molds and yeast rather develop in low water activity products during product shelf-life. Off-colors, off-odors, acidity, gas production, textural and functional changes are clues of microbial development affecting taste or appearance of foods no longer suitable for human consumption. Nevertheless, exposure to successive stresses strongly impact microbial viability yielding altered germination times, lag phases and growth rates. Understanding microbial fitness and survival in extreme and fluctuating conditions will help identify and select biomarkers to consider in risk assessment... Thus, the persistence of super foes with specific resistances or enzymatic abilities in the food and beverage industries will be  accurately tracked.

This topic will be part of session 3 on Tuesday the 2nd of July


Inactivation processes and product stability assessment

Are these foes indestructible or do they have some weakness? What are the efficiencies of different processes used to inactivate microbial spoilers in food and their enzymes, such as:

  • Physical processes such as heat treatment,
  • Sterilization or pasteurization,
  • Ohmic heating,
  • Pulsed-light, high pressure treatments
  • Chemical sanitation processes such as cleaning in place and biocide use?

What are the resistances found amongst the highly diversified microbial food spoilers: sporulated or vegetative forms of bacteria and molds? What are the effects of these treatments on enzymes, such as lipases or proteases, which affect the sensory qualities of foods: off flavors, texture defects or functional properties?

This topic will be part of session 4 on Tuesday the 2nd of July


Spoiler/pathogen and quality indicators/pathogen boundaries

Are these foes only super spoilers, or are they able to mutate to evil pathogens? While in most cases the considered bacteria, yeasts and molds are mainly involved in food spoilage, they can sometimes synthesize toxins. These phenomena are still not very well described, making risk management difficult. What are the required conditions for toxin synthesis? What are the required population levels to consider the quality indicators as potential food borne pathogens? What are the boundaries between spoilers and pathogens? How do you define a relevant regulation and legislation criteria?


Spoilage risk assessment

What is the probability of a spoilage event? How to develop a risk assessment approach? How to estimate the damage level by describing the food spoiler biodiversity, tracking the species and strains, quantifying the metabolic traits associated with spoilage, predicting the microbial behavior all among the  food production processes and storage conditions? What will be the damage levels? How to select the efficient measure to prevent food spoilage from farm to fork? What are the available tools to evaluate the spoilage probability? Which super foes is the more risky?

This topic will be part of session 5 on Wednesday the 3rd of July


How to fight super spoilers? Food industry concerns and needs

How to integrate super spoilers, wonder spores and diehard microorganisms in food spoilage risk management. This last session will foster discussions on industrial issues with practical implementation, code of practice, criterion or testimony on how to avoid or control these super foes.

This topic will be part of session 6 on Wednesday the 3rd of July



How to Submit an abstract?

Follow the Author Instructions Use this model for your abstract Abstract Layout

Poster Size

Poster should respect the standard size A0 (84x118,8cm).

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