In the past 25 years, there has been a great evolution in the food and feed manufacturing industries, from a reliance on finished product testing, to intensive environmental monitoring programs (EMPs). These programs can take many forms, ranging from very generic indicator monitoring (testing for ATP or aerobic plate counts), to specific pathogen EMPs, with the most common being Listeria spp. and Salmonella—organisms that are uniquely qualified to take up residence in food manufacturing plants. While these programs can look very different, they all generate data that can be used to improve food safety protocols.
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