dispatches from Analytica 2014

Automated colony counting meets food testing demands

By Joseph James Whitworth contact

- Last updated on GMT

Automated colony counting ensures results are consistently the same standard when dealing with high-throughput demands, according to Synoptics.  

Colony counting and zone measuring are used to check plates and pathogenic bacteria and other organisms on spiral plates, pour plates and membrane filters in industries such as food.

Paul Ellwood, managing director of Synoptics, said it is used in a high-throughput environment for processing of up to 300-400 plates per day.

“One of the big advantages of electronic imaging such as this is that you get an electronic copy, not just of the image but also of the results,”​ he told FoodQualityNews.com at Analytica trade show in Munich.

“They could be recorded and viewed on a spreadsheet so you can always go back later on if you wish to an audit of your system or check, even several years later, a particular image to see what it did for you the first time around​.”

Synbiosis, a division of the firm, produces equipment for microbiologists to automate microbial colony counting.

ProtoCOL 3 allows plates of up to 150mm to be automatically read and will count colonies as small as 43 microns or measure zones to 0.1mm.

aCOLyte 3 is a manual version that accepts plates up to 90mm diameter and the camera allows colonies as small as 0.3mm to be counted.

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