What is ATP?

ATP stands for Adenosine Triphosphate. It is defined as an organic compound, and is the main fuel source that drives cellular functions. ATP is found in all life forms that are currently known, and could be thought of as a carbohydrate to a human. For those interested, a single ketone used by the body yields 22 ATP on average[1].

The human body produces ATP and regenerates it on a daily basis – it is also used by microbial life forms, which is the focus of this article.

As ATP is found in and around microbial colonies, we use it to test for the biological concentrations present. This reading displays a number that can easily be interpreted – anything below 30 is “clean”, between 30 – 60 is acceptable but requiring attention, and above 60 is a fail (in sanitation terms). ATP is measured using a device that is able to test rapidly, by measuring the light produced through a reaction with luciferase.

ATP tests can be used to: [2]

  • Control biological treatment reactors
  • Guide biocide dosing programs
  • Determine drinking water cleanliness
  • Manage fermentation processes
  • Assess soil activity
  • Determine corrosion / deposit process type
  • Measure equipment or product sanitation
  • Test current cleaning protocols and regimes

How does this help me, and/or my business?

Regardless of whether you run a food factory, or a childcare centre, ATP testing can serve a range of purposes. By knowing the ATP count on your surfaces or products, you can adjust cleaning and general sanitation guidelines to suit. At BiotixPro, we promote the use of active probiotics that are able to continually eat away at existing pathogens (viruses, fungi, and bacteria). We commonly incorporate ATP demonstrations to show how probiotic colonies will drastically reduce ATP counts over many hours (up to 72 in fact!).

How is ATP testing conducted in New Zealand?

At BiotixPro, we send out a mobile team with an ATP device and the appropriate swabs for the application (dry surface, vs water testing for example). ATP testing is conducted with the use of a device that has a built in luminometer. This measures the light reading from the swab when combined with luciferase. As our ATP devices give virtually instant readings (10 seconds), we are able to deliver results digitally during the meeting. We can certify ATP readings as a verified third party for quality assurance to your customers and clients. This can save you the hassle of going through rigorous microbiological tests with laboratories.

ATP Testing: Auckland Based, available nationwide.

Our main branch is located on the North Shore of Auckland. Prices start at $249 +gst including 5 swabs. Due to high demand, we regularly schedule days to other regional centres to conduct ATP testing. Locations include: Hamilton, Wellington, Tauranga, Christchurch, Queenstown and more. If you would like to schedule one of these appointments, please let the team know at bookings@biotixpro.co.nz