e. Common potentially hazardous foods are eggs and egg products, milk and
milk products, meat, poultry, fish, and shellfish.
a. As a preventive medicine specialist, you will be required to inspect a variety of
food service facilities. Your most important goal will be to prevent and correct situations
that could cause foodborne disease. Since microorganisms are the cause of many
foodborne diseases, it is necessary to know some basic information about them.
b. Microorganisms are living plants and animals, which are so small that they
can be seen only through a microscope.
c. There are thousands of microorganisms existing everywhere in nature. Most
microorganisms are not harmful; some are even beneficial to man.
d. Some microorganisms are capable of producing disease in man. They are
termed pathogenic microorganisms and cause a variety of different diseases. This
subcourse will deal only with those illnesses caused by consuming food that contains
harmful microorganisms or their toxic products.
e. The three types of microorganisms most commonly involved in foodborne
disease outbreaks are bacteria, viruses, and parasites. Bacteria present the greatest
problem and are the most common cause of foodborne disease.
f. Since bacteria cause most foodborne illnesses, the prevention of these
illnesses depends largely on controlling the growth of bacteria.
g. There are six basic requirements for the growth of bacteria. They are:
Controls on bacteria basically involve controlling these requirements and making the
environment unfavorable for bacterial growth.