This is a review of reports that employed aerobic plate counts on fresh meat and poultry products since 1985; it lists synopses of 100 applications. A total of 15 different plating media were used, with 48 (48%) being either plate count agar (PCA) or tryptone glucose yeast extract agar. The temperature-time relations ranged from a low temperature of 20°C for 120 h to 37°C for 24 h. Some 29 different temperature-time combinations were used among the total of 109, with 21 (19.3%) being 35°C/48 h, followed by 12 (11.0%) at 32°C/48 h, 11 (10.1%) at 25°C/48 h, and 9 (8.3%) at 25°C/72 h. Fifty-four (49.5%) plate count applications employed incubation temperatures of 30°C and below. From the 26 reports that employed psychrotrophic counts, 16 (61.5%) used PCA; 18 different temperature-time combinations were used, with 7°C/10 d employed by only four. Twenty-one (80.8%) employed an incubation temperature at or <10°C, and five employed an incubation temperature >10°C. There is a serious need for some consensus on methodologies for aerobic and psychrotrophic counts on fresh meat and poultry products.

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