ISO 19250:2010, Water quality – Detection of Salmonella spp, specifies a method for the detection of presumptive or confirmed salmonella bacteria in water samples and is applicable to both water intended for drinking water purposes and also recreational waters. Salmonella bacteria are widely occurring all over the world. Their pathogenesis varies depending on the species and susceptibility of the host.

The natural hosts of salmonellae include humans, agricultural and domestic livestock, and wild animals including birds, making it impossible to eliminate the bacteria from the environment. Salmonellae may be present in all types of domestic and agricultural waste water, freshwaters, including ground and drinking waters, as well as sea water.

Following the infection of humans, Salmonella can cause severe disease with ensuing sequels causing long term ill health.

According to the United Nations, an estimated 884 million people lack access to safe drinking water and a total of more than 2.6 billion people do not have access to basic sanitation.

The publication of ISO 19250:2010 is timely since a recent resolution adopted by the UN General Assembly affirms : "Safe and clean drinking water and sanitation is a human right essential to the full enjoyment of life and all other human rights". The standard will also help to meet the objectives of one of the UN Millennium Development Goals which targets the reduction by half by 2015 of the proportion of people who cannot reach or afford safe drinking water and sanitation.

ISO 19250:2010, Water quality – Detection of Salmonella spp., was developed by ISO technical committee ISO/TC 147, Water quality, subcommittee SC 4, Microbiological methods. It is available from ISO national member institutes (see the complete list with contact details) and may also be obtained directly from ISO Central Secretariat, price 106 Swiss francs, through the ISO Store or by contacting the Marketing & Communication department (see right-hand column).