2013 Volume 30 Issue 2 Pages 116-124
The objective of this paper is to determine the cause in a case of bacterial contamination of ESL (extended shelf life)-pasteurized milk produced by way of a Comprehensive Sanitation Management and Production Process and to identify issues of sanitation management by HACCP. There were multiple incidences of complaints such as that “a gelation was found upon opening the package” of ESL-pasteurized milk manufactured in a facility obtained approval of Comprehensive Sanitation Management and Production Process within our jurisdiction which became a case involving the voluntary recall of 24,340 retail packages. Pseudomonas fluorescens was detected from all products that have been removed from manufacturer, including the unopened same lot product kept by refrigeration, the opened same lot product kept at room temperature, and the recalled product from consumers. Furthermore, as a result of determining the reproducibility of milk gelation by inoculated pack studies, the pathogen was considered to be Pseudomonas fluorescens. It was presumed that bacterial contamination had occurred due to an incidence of external air intake through the part where the stirring shaft penetrates the semi-aseptic surge tank positioned immediately preceding the filling process because of the condition that the pressure inside the tank had become negative. Whereas the detailed records accompanying the introduction of the HACCP system were useful in clarifying the route of contamination, it was also found that, although sanitation management by the HACCP system is quite effective for hazards within the scope of its projections, it is unable to handle hazards which are unexpected or hazards for which methods of management are not stipulated. The matter of obtaining approval as a Comprehensive Sanitation Management and Production Process and the matter of operating this system are two different matters, and it is necessary to continuously improve the operation by auditing and reviewing risk evaluations and control measure.