Don’t Play ‘Chicken’ With Foodborne Illness: 5 Campylobacter Questions Answered

When consumers purchase chicken from the grocery store, they could be bringing home more than just a drumstick. Campylobacter has crept its way up the charts to become the top bacterial cause of reported foodborne illnesses in the United States. Move over, Salmonella! But how does Campylobacter infiltrate the food supply, and why is it seemingly on the rise? We’ve answered five need-to-know questions about Campylobacter below: Continue reading Don’t Play ‘Chicken’ With Foodborne Illness: 5 Campylobacter Questions Answered

Technical Tuesdays: Digging Deeper to Find the Root Cause of Food Safety Issues

Food manufacturers who find an issue during an internal food safety audit need to perform a root cause analysis and take corrective actions in order to eliminate the problem. But what if subsequent internal audits reveal the same repeating issue? That is a good indication that the company did not find all of the root causes to place corrective actions against. And for many companies, the issue comes back repeatedly despite corrective actions.  Continue reading Technical Tuesdays: Digging Deeper to Find the Root Cause of Food Safety Issues

Insider Insight to Non-GMO Claim Market Trends

It’s no secret that consumers are continually seeking out healthier foods, with a particular emphasis lately on organic foods, dairy-free or meat-free alternatives and products free of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs). But should you make a non-GMO claim on your food label? The answer lies in understanding consumer motivations for purchasing one product over another. While these trends are not new, non-GMO claims specifically have been on the rise as top motivators of consumer food choice over the past few years. Continue reading Insider Insight to Non-GMO Claim Market Trends

Technical Tuesdays: Harnessing Integrated Pest Management For Your Facility

As an auditor for over 35 years, I have noticed most food facilities do not fully understand the fundamentals of Integrated Pest Management (IPM). Many know about pest control, but they do not quite grasp the full power of establishing an effective IPM plan.

There are five steps for establishing an effective IPM plan: Continue reading Technical Tuesdays: Harnessing Integrated Pest Management For Your Facility

Technical Tuesdays: Essential Hazard Analysis – Understanding the Microbiological Profile of Ingredients

Required under both the FDA and USDA-FSIS regulations, the Hazard Analysis is arguably the most important component of any food manufacturer’s food safety system. Unless identification of CCPs or Preventive Controls is based on a scientifically sound, properly-supported hazard analysis, hazards may not be adequately controlled. Since microbial hazards often represent the greatest potential food safety risk for food products, it’s critical to understand the microbiological profile of ingredients. This requires both general knowledge of hazards applicable to a particular ingredient and specific information on the ingredients sourced from your suppliers. Continue reading Technical Tuesdays: Essential Hazard Analysis – Understanding the Microbiological Profile of Ingredients

Environmental Monitoring: The Nuts and Bolts of Food Safety Programs

In the pursuit of improved food safety, environmental control measures are highly recommended to prevent finished product contamination. Largely void of state-of-the-art gadgets and gizmos, environmental control programs can be viewed as “the nuts and bolts” of food safety programs. However, their value in the ongoing battle against foodborne disease cannot be denied. This article covers a number of the vital components that are found in environmental control programs. Continue reading Environmental Monitoring: The Nuts and Bolts of Food Safety Programs

Food Safety Training: Train to Retain Your New Employees

The best HACCP, GMP, or sanitation training program can be rendered meaningless if your company suffers from high employee turnover. The proper orientation of employees should not be undervalued or overlooked.

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The first few weeks or months in a food plant environment with new responsibilities can be highly stressful and confusing. During this critical time, an effective orientation can mean the difference between a new employee becoming an asset or realizing a lost return on your investment. Continue reading Food Safety Training: Train to Retain Your New Employees

4 Common Approaches to Consider for Process Validation Studies

Under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), food manufacturers are charged with employing processes that mitigate risks and aid in the delivery of safe and stable products. Manufacturers employ a wide range of thermal processes to inactivate spoilage microorganisms and pathogens that can affect product shelf-life. Verifying the effectiveness of these processes through well-designed and executed validation studies is essential in today’s regulatory environment.  Continue reading 4 Common Approaches to Consider for Process Validation Studies

10 Key Things You Should Know About Yeast and Mold

Yeast and mold are organisms of great importance to the food industry. These two species are very different from bacteria, which are more commonly associated with foodborne illness. Hundreds of yeast and mold species have been isolated from foods and due to their ability to grow over a wide spectrum of environmental conditions very few foods are entirely safe from fungal spoilage. Continue reading 10 Key Things You Should Know About Yeast and Mold