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Bacteriocin inactivation of Listeria monocytogenes 412 was studied as a function of growth phase. Cells were treated with nisin (300 IU ml−1) or pediocin (320 or 2560 AU ml−1) for 20 min at 30 °C. Inactivation with nisin or the low concentration of pediocin was growth phase dependent, with exponentially growing cells being more susceptible than stationary cells. No effect of growth phase was observed for the high pediocin concentration. Pediocin inactivation (320 AU ml−1) of L. monocytogenes 412 exposed to osmotic (6.5% NaCl) or low-temperature (5 °C) stress was investigated. Pediocin failed to inactivate osmotically stressed cultures and was unable to inhibit cold-stressed cells to the same degree as unstressed cells.