Tue, 05/29/2018 - 20:44

Food Processing and Packaging Hygiene

The shelf life of food products is subject to many internal and external influences, including  hygienic processing factors such as microbiological air purity and the cleanliness of equipment that comes into contact with the product.

To determine processing hygiene, we can measure indoor air quality by determining microbial count and number of particles per size category, or by using the classic sedimentation and contact Agar plate count methods.

Packaging hygiene also plays an important role in food quality by protecting products from negative external influences. We provide microbiological, chemical and sensory tests to determine packaging integrity.

EU Regulation No. 1935/2004 dictates that food contact materials must not release any substances at levels harmful to health or negatively change the composition, taste or aroma of food.

We perform chemical analysis of packaging for substances that are not approved for use in food contact materials or are only approved to specific threshold values. We also examine whether and in what amounts substances in the packaging migrate into the food.

Analysis parameters include:

  • Specific and overall migration limits according to EU Regulation No. 10/2011
  • Regulated substances and undesired contaminants from packaging and equipment, such as:
    • Mineral oil saturated hydrocarbons (MOSH) and mineral oil aromatic hydrocarbons (MOAH) from recycled cardboard or lubricants (via LC-GC/FID)
    • Plasticizers from plastic packaging (via GC/MS)
    • Additional parameters depending on the composition of the materials
  • Microbiological tests according to the Industry Association for Food Technology and Packaging (IVLV) and the German Institute for Standardization (DIN) recommendations

For sensory testing, a trained sensory panel examines whether the packaging materials have a scent and whether they can impact the organoleptic characteristics of your product under the intended process and storage conditions.

As a leading service provider in food hygiene, we offer expert, holistic analyses.