A comparison was made between Butterfield's buffered phosphate solution. 0.1% peptone in distilled water. 0.5% peptone in distilled water, 0.85% NaCl in distilled water, and pure distilled water as diluents for total bacterial counts of 28 different food samples. Plates were incubated at 35 and 22 C for 2 and 5 days, respectively. Butterfield's diluent afforded the highest overall mean count for most samples regardless of the incubation temperature. Highest counts occurred with all diluents at 22 C. Although Butterfield's diluent. 0.1% peptone, and 0.5% peptone appeared to yield higher counts for most samples than did distilled water or 0.85% NaCl, statistically the mean counts obtained for the live diluents used were not significantly different from each other. It appears that no single diluent is suited for every possible sample type.
1Florida Agricultural Experiment Stations Journal Series No. 6040.