Clostridium Botulinum
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Clostridium Botulinum causes Botulism, a poisoning (poisoning is also known as Intoxication), caused by exotoxins excreted by the botulinum bacteria under anaerobic conditions. Killing the bacteria requires higher heat than that of even boiling water, where Clostridium Botulinum can survive for hours. At boiling temperatures 212° F (100° C) any excreted botulinum exotoxin is inactivated, but it takes 250° F (121° C) and higher internal temperatures to kill the spores. The botulism bacteria is found in contaminated soil and can end up on grown vegetables or food. Botulism is not very prevalent today because of improved commercial manufacturing processes and quality controls but watch for botulism especially in home canned foods, mushrooms, garlic in oil, and low acid vegetables.


A good way to avoid botulism is to stick with commercially processed products that are properly dated and packed. No matter the source, never use anything canned that is damaged or bulging as that can be a sign that the botulism bacteria have been busy inside.