Six hundred Grade A raw milk samples were plated on Standard Methods agar and the pour-plate counts compared using three methods. Counts of each sample were determined after incubation at 26, 30 and 32 C for 72 h with an automatic colony counter (ACC). Quebec colony counter and hand tally (HT) and Quebec colony counter and electronic probe with digital register (DT). No significant differences were found between the counts obtained with the HT and the DT for any of the three incubation temperatures. The ACC counts were lower (P < .01) than the manual counts at each temperature. The ACC counts were .39, .35 and .31 log counts lower than the manual count at 26, 30 and 32 C, respectively. The ACC counts at 72 h were higher (P < .01) than the ACC counts at 48 h for all temperatures. The difference was about .41 log counts. The two manual counts were totally correlated, while the correlation between the ACC counts and the manual count; was 97. Regression equations were formulated for predicting the 72 h HT count from either the 48 or 72 h ACC count.

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Author notes

1Published with the approval of the Director of the Agricultural Experiment Station as journal article no. 78-5-215.