The effects of sodium alginate on Staphyiococcus aureus 196 exposed to mild heating or to freezing at -21 C were studied. The addition of sodium alginate to a diluent appeared to confer some protection of viable cells during mild heating. The effect of the presence of sodium alginate in the suspending media during freezing was less clear. There was a slight trend, not statistically significant, for greater reduction in numbers of viable cells at the low temperature when 4% alginate was present in phosphate buffer. Results indicated that the value of sodium alginate in controlling this food-poisoning microorganism in frozen food is questionable.