Special Processes for Food Service - Lectures

This series of lectures focuses on the microbiology of various forms of food processing at retail, specific concerns for each process, and necessary controls for the hazards associated with these foods. Particular emphasis is placed on sous vide, cook/chill, and acidification to prolong product shelf life.

This training combines lectures and demonstrations by experts in food safety and regulations.

Intro to Microbiology

This lecture provides an overview of food microbiology. It starts by describing the different groups of microorganisms associated with food, such as molds, yeasts, and bacteria. It then focuses on bacterial reproduction, spore formation and the factors that affect bacterial growth and survival. The last part of this lecture focuses on bacterial pathogens associated with food, the disease they cause and processing factors that may be used to control them in foods.

Intro to Food Microbiology PDF Icon  (9MB)


This video is the first part of a two-part lecture entitled “Cook-Chill Method for Retail and Restaurants”. In this first section, information is provided about the history of food preservation, some useful definitions, an overview of the cook-chill process steps and how they relate to food safety, regulations related to cooking foods and any processing consideration related to cooking.

Cook & Chill for Retail Restaurants PDF Icon (6MB)


This video is the second part of the lecture entitled “Cook-Chill Method for Retail and Restaurants”. In this second section information is provided about the bagging and sealing steps used for cook-in-a-bag or sous vide process, safety concerns and regulations related to reduced oxygen packaging, chilling process, and regulatory requirements, and storage of cook-chill products. This video also describes two examples of cook-chill processes and the safety concerns associated with them.

Cook & Chill for Retail Restaurants PDF Icon (6MB)


This lecture discusses the principles of acidified foods. In general, it covers definitions, regulations, and exemptions related to acidified foods, pH and acidity in foods, acidification procedures, thermal processing for acidified foods, and some processing considerations.

Principles of Acidified Foods  PDF Icon (3MB)


This lecture describes the importance of sanitation in food retail environments and restaurants and provides some basic knowledge in this area. Some of the topics discussed include proper cleaning prior to sanitation, chlorination basics and factors affecting the efficacy of chlorination, other sanitizers than chlorine, and some practices to prevent contamination and cross-contamination in the food preparation environment.

Sanitation PDF Icon (6MB)

Supplemental Videos

Downloadable Cards and NebGuides

Acidified Foods CardAcidified Foods Card PDF Icon (835K)
Cook and Chill Process Card Cook and Chill Process Card PDF Icon (601K)
Acidified Foods GuideAcidified Foods NebGuide PDF Icon (636K)
Selecting a pH Meter GuideSelecting a pH Meter NebGuide PDF Icon(629K)

For video laboratory demonstrations please visit

The Science of Safe of Food - Special Processes Lab page.

Questions? Please contact the Food Processing Center at fpc@unl.edu