The effect of temperature on the maximal specific growth rate was studied in Bacillus cereus between 5 and 40 degrees C cultivated in courgette broth and rich medium (J broth). B. cereus grown from 5 to 38 degrees C in rich medium. No growth was observed in courgette broth below 10 degrees C. The Arrhenius plot was fitted from experimental data of B. cereus grown in rich medium and at regulated pH, oxygen and temperature. Two domains which are separated by a critical temperature around 13 degrees C can be distinguished with regard to temperature dependence of maximal specific growth rate. Over the cold domain from 5 to 13 degrees C, the temperature characteristic was 2.6 fold higher than over the sub-optimal domain from 13 to 38 degrees C suggesting that the growth temperature regulates several metabolic pathways.