How to Test for Bacteria

What Are Common Methods for Bacteria Testing?

Bacteria can be found throughout the environment; including common household surfaces, water, and even skin. While some bacteria can pose health risks, most are beneficial to humans.

For those who are curious, there are multiple ways to test for bacteria, or the microbial communities that surround us every day. Common test methods for bacteria include:

  • Commercially available kits that will identify microorganisms on a surface or in the air at your house
  • Bacteria cultivation in a controlled lab setting where a microbiologist will identify the organism. This is typically done to identify disease causing microbes (i.e. Strep throat)

Bacteria and molds are often identified by looking at the characteristics of the cell, such as size and shape, and the food sources it utilizes. Traditional microbiology takes into account all of these aspects of the cell’s life to determine exactly what type of microbe is present. Modern microbiology also utilizes the DNA sequencing to rapidly identify a microbe within minutes.

How Does Microban Test for Bacteria?

The Microban microbiology lab utilizes the well-known ISO 22196 test method to test for bacteria. This works by taking specific bacteria and placing them onto one surface treated with Microban technology and one untreated surface. Let’s take a cutting board as an example; the microbiologist will place Salmonella, a typical microbe encountered on food surfaces, onto an unprotected cutting board as a control and onto a Microban-treated cutting board as a test surface. After a set amount of time, the bacteria are removed from both surfaces and counted. The microbiologist will then issue a report demonstrating the reduction in bacteria observed on the Microban-treated cutting board versus the control sample.

Explore Bacteria & Mold Testing Services for Your Products

For more information on how Microban can assist you with your testing requirements, visit our page dedicated to mold and bacteria testing.

Microban antimicrobial product protection is limited to the product itself and is not designed to protect the users of these products from disease causing microorganisms, food borne illnesses, or as a substitute for normal cleaning and hygiene practices. Microban International, Ltd. makes neither direct nor implied health claims for the products containing Microban® antimicrobial product protection. The information presented in this blog post is solely for the purpose of providing general information regarding Microban International, Ltd.