MCRO06009 2016 Agricultural and Food Microbiology

General Details

Full Title
Agricultural and Food Microbiology
Transcript Title
Agri-Food Microbiology
N/A %
Subject Area
MCRO - Microbiology
ESCI - Environmental Science
06 - NFQ Level 6
05 - 05 Credits
Start Term
2016 - Full Academic Year 2016-17
End Term
2019 - Full Academic Year 2019-20
Michael Broaders, Aideen Considine
Programme Membership
SG_SAGRI_G06 000000 Higher Certificate in Science in Agri-Food Science SG_SAGRI_B07 201800 Bachelor of Science in Science in Agri-Food Science SG_SAGRI_H08 201800 Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Science in Agri-Food Science

The aim of this module is to introduce students to the relevance and importance of microorganisms in both the agricultural and food sectors.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module the learner will/should be able to;


 Explain the interactions between microorganisms and the food environment and understand the factors influencing their growth and survival.


 Describe the characteristics of food borne pathogenic and spoilage microorganisms and the methods used for their isolation and identification.


Identify the conditions, including sanitation practices, under which the important pathogens and spoilage microorganisms are commonly inactivated, killed or made harmless in foods.


Review microbial fermentation and evaluate it's importance in the agri-food sector.


Appraise zoonotic diseases and their relevance as occupationally acquired infections


 Enumerate microorganisms in a selection of food, drinking water and soil samples and monitor surfaces , personnel and air for microbial contaminants

Teaching and Learning Strategies

This module will be delivered by lecturers, enquiry based learning sessions and laboratory activities. All topics will be available on Moodle as will an extensive amount of additional relevant information

Module Assessment Strategies

To assess the learning outcomes the students will be tested on the theory covered by short question tests and final theory examination.

The laboratory activities will be assessed on an ongoing basis by short question examinations, electronically uploaded laboratory reports, log book assessment and the periodic testing of practical laboratory skills acquired.


Repeat Assessments

Repeat final theory examinations will be available as will repeat C/A  

Module Dependencies


Indicative Syllabus



Food properties effecting microbial growth, water activity, pH, oxidation reduction potential and anti-microbial constituents

Food borne infections and intoxications to include bacterial, fungal, viral and food borne parasites

Effects of spoilage organisms on a variety of food products

Conventional and novel methodologies for the isolation, identification and enumeration of food related microorganisms

Hygienic handling and processing of food products

Physical and chemical methods to control microbial growth in foods

Fermentation as an ancient method of food preservation, brewing and silage production

Diseases that can be passed from animals to humans and methods for their prevention and control


Use of selective and differential media to isolate specific bacteria from food samples

Counting and microscopic examination of microbial contaminants in compost and soil samples

Total viable counts on a selection of drinking water samples

Analysis of water for faecal indicator bacteria

Enumeration of organisms on surfaces and personnel using swab and contact plate techniques

Air analysis for bacterial and fungal organisms




Coursework & Assessment Breakdown

Coursework & Continuous Assessment
70 %
End of Semester / Year Formal Exam
30 %

Coursework Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Short Answer Questions Theory Continuous Assessment Assessment 10 % Week 21 1,2,3
2 Short Answer Questions Theory Continuous Assessment Assessment 10 % Week 25 4,5
3 Written Report /Laboratory Notebook Practical Written Report 30 % OnGoing 6
4 Short Answer Questions Laboratory Continuous Assessment Assessment 10 % Week 22 6
5 Short Answer Questions Laboratory Continuous Assessment Assessment 10 % Week 26 6

End of Semester / Year Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Final Theory Final Exam Closed Book Exam 30 % End of Semester 1,2,3,4,5

Full Time Mode Workload

Type Location Description Hours Frequency Avg Workload
Lecture Lecture Theatre Lecture 2 Weekly 2.00
Laboratory Practical Science Laboratory Practical 2 Weekly 2.00
Total Full Time Average Weekly Learner Contact Time 4.00 Hours

Module Resources

Non ISBN Literary Resources

Atlas R, 1996. Principles of Microbiology. 2nd edition. William C Browe.


Bashir B, 2015. Soil Microbiology. 1st Edition. Lambert Academic Publishing.



Bibek R, Arun B, 2013. Fundamental Food Microbiology. 5th edition. CRC Press.


Dubey R, Maheshwar D, 2010. Practical Microbiology. 1st edition. S Chand & Co Ltd.


Glazer A N, Nikaid H, 2007. Microbial Biotechnology. 2nd edition. Cambridge University Press.


Hofkin B, 2010. Living in a microbial world. 1st edition. Garland Science.


Madigan M, Martinko J, Stahl D, Clark D, 2011. Brock Biology of Microorganisms. 13th edition. Benjamin Cummings.


Maier R, Pepper I, Gerba C, 2008. Environmental Microbiology. 2nd edition. Academic Press.


Martin R A, 2007. Food Microbiology.3rd edition. Royal Society of Chemistry.


Prescott L, Harley J, Klein D, 2004. Microbiology. 6th edition. McGraw‑Hill Higher Education.


Schlegel H, Koqut M, 1993. General Microbiology. 7th edition. Cambridge University Press.


Strelkauskas A, StrelkauskasJ, Moszyk‑ Strelkauskas D, 2009. Microbiology: A Clinical Approach.

1st edition. Garland Science.


Trivedi P.C. 2010. Agricultural Microbiology 1st Edition. Pointer Publishers.



Whellis M, 2007. Principles of Modern Microbiology. 1st edition. Jones and Bartlett.


Willey J, Sherwood L, Woolverton C, 2013. Prescott's Microbiology. 9th edition. McGraw‑Hill Science



Additional Information

Moodle Page