This document specifies a horizontal method for the enumeration of coagulase-positive staphylococci by counting the colonies obtained on a solid medium (Baird-Parker medium) after aerobic incubation at 34 °C to 38 °C and coagulase confirmation.
This document is applicable to:
— products intended for human consumption;
— products intended for animal feeding;
— environmental samples in the area of food and feed production, handling, and
— samples from the primary production stage.
This horizontal method was originally developed for the examination of all samples belonging to the food chain.
Because of the large variety of products in the food chain, it is possible that this horizontal method is not appropriate in every detail for all products. Nevertheless, it is expected that the required modifications are minimized so that they do not result in a significant deviation from this horizontal method.
Based on the information available at the time of publication of this document, this method is not considered to be (fully) suited to the examination of fermented products or other products containing technological flora based on Staphylococcus spp (e.g. S. xylosus) (such as cheeses made from raw milk and certain raw meat products) likely to be contaminated by:
— staphylococci forming atypical colonies on a Baird-Parker agar medium;
— background flora that can obscure the colonies being sought.
Nevertheless, both this document and ISO 6888-2 are given equivalent status.