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CERTUS

Crafting a Recall Plan

By | Blog

When Prevention isn’t Enough, a Carefully Crafted Recall Plan Goes into Effect

Your food safety plan should include a recall plan for each food with a hazard requiring a preventive control. According to the FDA, you must establish a written recall plan which must include procedures that describe the steps to be taken, and assign responsibility for taking those steps.

Notify the Buyer

Notify the direct consignees of the food being recalled, including how to return or dispose of the affected food.

Go Public

Notify the public about any hazard presented by the food when appropriate to protect public health.

Verify

Conduct effectiveness checks to verify that the recall is carried out.

Dispose

Appropriately dispose of recalled food. Possible disposal methods include:

Reprocessing

Reworking

Diverting to a use that does not present a safety concern

Destroying the food

For more information about recall plans, read the Federal Code of Regulations.

Taking a Look at Preventive Controls

By | Blog

Preventive Controls are a Necessary Component of Your Food Safety Plan

When developing your food safety plan, you must specify controls to ensure that identified hazards will be minimized or prevented. Preventive controls may include controls for processes, food allergens, and sanitation, as well as supply-chain safety, and a recall plan. The types of preventive controls you use will depend on the facility and the food:

Process Controls

Process controls are the procedures, practices, and processes to ensure the control of operations such as heat processing, acidifying, irradiating, and refrigerating foods.

Food Allergen Controls

Food allergen controls are the procedures for ensuring protection of food from allergen cross-contact (preventing the unintentional incorporation of an allergen in a food) — including during storage, handling, and use — and correctly labeling the finished food if it contains any of the eight major food allergens:

Milk

Eggs

Fish

Crustacean shellfish

Tree nuts

Peanuts

Wheat

Soybeans

Sanitation Controls

Sanitation controls are the procedures to ensure the facility’s sanitation practices are adequate to significantly minimize or prevent hazards such as environmental pathogens, biological hazards due to employee handling, and food allergen hazards. Sanitation controls must address:

Cleanliness of food-contact surfaces, including food-contact surfaces of utensils and equipment

Prevention of allergen cross-contact

Cross-contamination from insanitary objects

Cross-contamination from personnel to food, food packaging material, and other food-contact surfaces;

Cross-contamination from raw product to processed product

Note that sanitation controls do not include all sanitation procedures used in the facility, only those that are used to control hazards.

Supply Chain Controls

Supply-chain controls are activities taken to verify that suppliers that are controlling hazards are doing so effectively.

Recall Plan

A recall plan is necessary for any food with a hazard requiring a preventive control. It must be written and must include steps to take (and who is responsible for taking them) to

Notify your direct customers

Notify the public, if necessary

Check the effectiveness of the recall

Dispose of the food appropriately.

For more information on Preventive Controls, read the FDA Regulation: Current Good Manufacturing Practice, Hazard Analysis, and Risk-Based Preventive Controls for Human Food

Prevent Contamination in your Food Processing Plant

By | Blog

Supervisors and Personnel Share Responsibility for Keeping Plant Free from Contamination

To limit the potential for contamination, plant management should take all reasonable measures and precautions to ensure that personnel who are involved in food processing are healthy and conduct adequate hygiene and cleanliness.

Disease Control

If a supervisor observes any person appearing to have an illness, open lesion, boils, sores, infected wounds, or any other abnormal source of microbial contamination and there is a reasonable possibility of contaminating food, food-contact surfaces, or food-packaging materials, the supervisor shall exclude this person from any operations which may be expected to result in such contamination until the condition is corrected. Additionally, personnel should be instructed to report such health conditions to their supervisors.

Cleanliness

All persons working in direct contact with food, food-contact surfaces, and food-packaging materials shall conform to hygienic practices while on duty to the extent necessary to protect against contamination of food. The methods for maintaining cleanliness include, but are not limited to:

Clothing

Wear outer garments suitable to the operation in a manner that protects against the contamination of food, food-contact surfaces, or food-packaging materials.

Hygiene

Maintain adequate personal cleanliness.

Hand Washing

Wash hands thoroughly (and sanitize if necessary) in an adequate hand-washing facility:

Before starting work

After each absence from the work-station

At any other time when the hands may have become soiled or contaminated

Accessories

Remove all unsecured jewelry and other objects that might fall into food, equipment, or containers, and remove hand jewelry that cannot be adequately sanitized during periods in which food is manipulated by hand. If such hand jewelry cannot be removed, it may be covered by material which can be maintained in an intact, clean, and sanitary condition and which effectively protects against the contamination by these objects of the food, food-contact surfaces, or food-packaging materials.

Gloves

Maintain gloves, if they are used in food handling, in an intact, clean, and sanitary condition. The gloves should be of an impermeable material.

Hair

Wear, where appropriate, in an effective manner, hair nets, headbands, caps, beard covers, or other effective hair restraints.

Personal Belongings

Store clothing or other personal belongings in areas other than where food is exposed or where equipment or utensils are washed.

Behaviors

Confine the following to areas other than where food may be exposed or where equipment or utensils are washed:

Eating food

Chewing gum

Drinking beverages

Using tobacco.

Additional Precautions

Taking any other necessary precautions to protect against contamination of food, food-contact surfaces, or food-packaging materials with microorganisms or foreign substances including, but not limited to:

Perspiration

Hair

Cosmetics

Tobacco

Chemicals

Medicines applied to the skin

 

For more information view the Current Good Manufacturing Practice in Manufacturing, Packing or Holding Human Food. 

 

The FDA Offers a Step-by-Step Guide to Build Your Food Safety Plan

By | Blog

Consolidated Resources and Step-by-Step Guidance to Develop a Personalized Food Safety Plan

Building your food safety plan can be a daunting task. The FDA provides a plan builder and other resources to help owners and operators of food facilities develop a personalized food defense plans for their facilities.

The Food Defense Plan Builder is a user-friendly software program that harnesses existing FDA tools, guidance, and resources for food defense into one single application.

The Food Defense Plan Builder guides the user through the following sections:

  • Company Information
  • Broad Mitigation Strategies
  • Vulnerability Assessment
  • Focused Mitigation Strategies
  • Emergency Contacts
  • Action Plan
  • Supporting Documents

Ready to get started?

Food Defense Plan Builder

Learn More | Download Now | View System Requirements

Training Videos

Watch Now

Workshops

Check out what’s available

Need more? Visit the FDA website for more information and resources.

 

Cleanroom Technology 1-8-18

By | News

CERTUS to develop rapid Environmental Salmonella assay for food producers

8-Jan-2018

The new Salmonella test will use the same Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS) technology and instrument platform as the company’s CERTUS EL test for Listeria.

CERTUS, a provider of food safety technologies, is expanding its rapid food pathogen detection portfolio with the initiation of research and development of an Environmental Salmonella assay.

To address a pathogen which, according to the CDC causes more than one million food-borne illnesses in the US annually, the new CERTUS Salmonella test will use the same proprietary Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS) technology and instrument platform as the company’s CERTUS EL test for Listeria, which is due to launch in early 2018.

End-use benefits will similarly include extremely simple workflow, on-site testing capabilities, real-time growth monitoring, immediate alerts upon detection and bio-containment for the safety of the food processor and consumer.

As with the CERTUS Listeria assay, the Salmonella test will be, all-in-one, all in-house.

“CERTUS remains committed to developing tools to help food producers protect consumers from the world’s most dangerous pathogens,” said CERTUS President, John Coomes. “Salmonella continues to plague the food industry in large numbers, so we’re excited to develop an in-house solution for small and mid-sized food processing plants and address a true need in the market. Our customers will realise greater value with the CERTUS system now that they will be able to run both environmental Listeria and Salmonella in the same instrument.”

As with the CERTUS EL test, the CERTUS Salmonella assay is being designed to run in a single enrichment media, homogeneous no wash format. This means that no sample manipulation is required and that the assay tube never has to be opened once the sampling swab is inserted.

The assay will be delivered in a Bio-Lock tube/cap design that cannot be opened after enrichment begins thus securing the environment from accidental contamination. This feature, combined with the target time-to-result goal of less than 24 hours, enables food producers to move testing on-site for significantly faster results.

Reagent research and development is being conducted in collaboration with CERTUS research partner, Solus Scientific, a UK-based food pathogen assay developer. Solus Scientific is the developer and manufacturer of their own Listeria, Salmonella and E. coli ELISA designed for large volume sample processing. Solus is also the assay development partner for the CERTUS EL assay used in the CERTUS System which is currently seeking AOAC validation.

Full Article

Rapid Micro Methods 1-6-18

By | News

CERTUS™ to Bring In-House Salmonella Testing to Food Processing Plants

 

CERTUS™, innovators in food safety technologies, announced the expansion of its rapid food pathogen detection menu with the initiation of research and development of an Environmental Salmonella assay. To address a pathogen which, according to the CDC causes more than one million food-borne illnesses in the United States annually, the new CERTUS Salmonella test will use the same proprietary Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS) technology and instrument platform as the company’s CERTUS EL test for Listeria, which is due to launch in early 2018. End-use benefits will similarly include extremely simple workflow, on-site testing capabilities, real-time growth monitoring, immediate alerts upon detection and bio-containment for the safety of the food processor and consumer. As with the CERTUS Listeria assay, the Salmonella test will be, “All-in one, all in-house.”

“CERTUS remains committed to developing tools to help food producers protect consumers from the world’s most dangerous pathogens,” says CERTUS President, John Coomes. “Salmonella continues to plague the food industry in large numbers, so we’re excited to develop an in-house solution for small and mid-sized food processing plants and address a true need in the market. Our customers will realize greater value with the CERTUS system now that they will be able to run both environmental Listeria and Salmonella in the same instrument.”

As with the CERTUS EL test, the CERTUS Salmonella assay is being designed to run in a single enrichment media, homogeneous no wash format. This means that no sample manipulation is required and that the assay tube never has to be opened once the sampling swab is inserted. The assay will be delivered in a Bio-Lock™ tube/cap design that cannot be opened after enrichment begins thus securing the environment from accidental contamination. This feature, combined with the target time-to-result goal of less than 24 hours, enables food producers to move testing on-site for significantly faster results.

Reagent research and development is being conducted in collaboration with CERTUS research partner, Solus Scientific, a UK-based food pathogen assay developer. Solus Scientific is the developer and manufacturer of their own Listeria, Salmonella and E. coli ELISA designed for large volume sample processing. Solus is also the assay development partner for the CERTUS EL assay used in the CERTUS System which is currently seeking AOAC validation.

Full Article

Produce Processing Magazine 12-20-17

By | News

New in-house salmonella testing solution for produce processors

December 20, 2017

CERTUS has expanded its rapid food pathogen detection menu with an environmental salmonella assay. The new CERTUS salmonella test will use the same proprietary Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS) technology and instrument platform as the company’s CERTUS Etest for listeria, which is due to launch in early 2018. End-use benefits will similarly include extremely simple workflow, on-site testing capabilities, real-time growth monitoring, immediate alerts upon detection and bio-containment for the safety of the food processor and consumer.

As with the CERTUS Etest, the CERTUS salmonella assay is being designed to run in a single enrichment media, homogeneous no wash format. This means that no sample manipulation is required and that the assay tube never has to be opened once the sampling swab is inserted. The assay will be delivered in a Bio-Lock tube/cap design that cannot be opened after enrichment begins thus securing the environment from accidental contamination. CERTUS said this feature, combined with the target time-to-result goal of less than 24 hours, enables food producers to move testing on-site for significantly faster results.

Reagent research and development is being conducted in collaboration with CERTUS research partner Solus Scientific, a UK-based food pathogen assay developer. Solus Scientific is the developer and manufacturer of their own enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for listeria, salmonella and E. coli, which is designed for large volume sample processing. Solus is also the assay development partner for the CERTUS Eassay used in the CERTUS System which is currently seeking AOAC validation.

Full Article

What to Include in Your Food Safety Plan

By | Blog

Key Components of Your Food Safety Plan

According to the FDA’s Small Entity Compliance Guide, a covered facility must have a written food safety plan including the following components:

Hazard analysis

Identify known or reasonably foreseeable hazards. If a facility reveals one or more hazards, then they are required to also have and implement written preventative controls for the identified hazards.

Preventive controls

Preventative controls must significantly minimize or prevent the identified hazards.

Oversight and management of preventive controls

Once a facility has identified a preventive control for a hazard, the facility must make sure that the controls are being met.

Supply chain program

Manufacturers must have and implement a risk-based supply chain program if the hazard analysis identifies a hazard that (1) requires a preventive control and (2) the control will be applied in the facility’s supply chain.

Recall plan

If the hazard analysis identifies a hazard requiring a preventive control, the facility must have a written recall plan that describes the procedures to perform a recall of the product.

For more details, read the FDA’s Small Entity Compliance Guide.

Food Safety Magazine 12-21-17

By | News

CERTUS to Bring In-House Salmonella Testing to Food Processing Plants

By Staff
CERTUS to Bring In-House Salmonella Testing to Food Processing Plants
This week, CERTUS announced the expansion of its rapid food pathogen detection menu with the initiation of research and development of an environmental Salmonella assay. The new CERTUS Salmonella test will use the same proprietary Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy technology and instrument platform as the company’s CERTUS EL test for Listeria, which is due to launch in early 2018. End-use benefits will similarly include extremely simple workflow, on-site testing capabilities, real-time growth monitoring, immediate alerts upon detection and bio-containment for the safety of the food processor and consumer. As with the CERTUS Listeria assay, the Salmonella test will be, “All-in-one, all in-house.”

“CERTUS remains committed to developing tools to help food producers protect consumers from the world’s most dangerous pathogens,” says CERTUS president, John Coomes. “Salmonella continues to plague the food industry in large numbers, so we’re excited to develop an in-house solution for small and mid-sized food processing plants and address a true need in the market. Our customers will realize greater value with the CERTUS system now that they will be able to run both environmental Listeria and Salmonella in the same instrument.”

As with the CERTUS EL test, the CERTUS Salmonella assay is being designed to run in a single enrichment media, homogeneous no-wash format. This means that no sample manipulation is required and that the assay tube never has to be opened once the sampling swab is inserted. The assay will be delivered in a Bio-Lock™ tube/cap design that cannot be opened after enrichment begins thus securing the environment from accidental contamination. This feature, combined with the target time-to-result goal of less than 24 hours, enables food producers to move testing on-site for significantly faster results.

Reagent research and development is being conducted in collaboration with CERTUS research partner, Solus Scientific, a UK-based food pathogen assay developer. Solus Scientific is the developer and manufacturer of their own Listeria, Salmonella and E. coli ELISA designed for large volume sample processing. Solus is also the assay development partner for the CERTUS EL assay used in the CERTUS System which is currently seeking AOAC validation.

CERTUSFoodSafety.com

Full Article