Effect of temperatures on the growth, toxin production, and heat resistance of Bacillus cereus in cooked rice

I never order rice when I’m out. I cook it better than I used to for the gluten-free wife, and the kid, who is friends with a kid whose Chinese mom makes excellent stir-fry that I can’t replicate.

But it only took me about 15 years to learn how to cook steak properly, so maybe, soon.

When I make rice, it’s into the refrigerator reasonably fast. But lots of asparagus-and-chicken-fried-ricepeople leave it out overnight and that’s the problem.

As explained by Wang et al in Foodborne Pathogens and Disease:

Bacillus cereus is capable of producing enterotoxin and emetic toxin, and Bacillus foodborne illnesses occur due to the consumption of food contaminated with endospores. The objectives of this study were to investigate the growth and toxin production of B. cereus in cooked rice and to determine the effect of temperature on toxin destruction. Cooked rice inoculated with B. cereus was stored at 15, 25, 35, and 45°C or treated at 80, 90, and 100°C. The results indicated that emetic toxin was produced faster than enterotoxin (which was not detected below 15°C) at all the storage temperatures (15–45°C) during the first 72 h. Emetic toxin persisted at 100°C for 2 h, although enterotoxin was easily to be destroyed by this treatment within 15 min. In addition, B. cereus in cooked rice stored at a warm temperature for a period was not inactivated due to survival of the thermostable endospores. These data indicate that the contaminated cooked rice with B. cereus might present a potential risk to consumers. Results from this study may help enhance the safety of such food, and provide valuable and reliable information for risk assessment and management, associated with the problem of B. cereus in cooked rice.