Food safety and testing microbiological analysis has become an essential part of food production and distribution. With 5,000 food-borne pathogens related deaths each year in the United States alone, with 25 percent of those caused by common pathogens such as Salmonella, Listeria, and Toxoplasma, microbiological analysis of food products is not only a top quality control concern, but also a public health responsibility.
The best plan for microbiological analysis of foods is to use a multi-tiered strategy. This gives several layers of coverage to provide multiple safeguards for pathogen detection. The following are possible approaches to attain this sort of multi-level protection:
- Acquire microbiological analysis equipment for your own use for optimum control of basic analysis needs.
- Use a microbiological food analysis provider for more complex analysis.
- Train your employees about food microbiology to further heighten your quality control.
Obtain fast food microbiological analysis through on-site equipment and suppliesCertain parameters, such as those linked to hygiene and sterility, need fast analysis. You need to be able to monitor and detect any anomalies quickly, to avoid the waste of disposing of contaminated product as well as the risk of contaminated products reaching your consumer. The best way to do this is to have the food testing and analysis equipment and supplies readily available for ongoing monitoring.
Utilize microbiological analysis laboratories for more complex microbiological testingSome pathogens may require involved incubation processes that are beyond on-site control. There also may be several different things you wish to test for and having on-site equipment for all of them could prove cost prohibitive. Independent laboratories can provide these services and add independent confirmation of your own results
Educate your employees on food microbiology and safety to provide a solid frontline defenseEven the most elaborate testing supplies and services can only detect contamination not prevent it. The main course of prevention is a well-educated workforce. Train your employees on proper sterilization and hygiene procedures and educate them on the dangers of cross contamination.
- Each type of food product has different sets and levels of contamination and pathogen risks. Educate yourself on the risks to your food product and focus and prioritize your microbial analysis and HAACP plans accordingly.