Acrylamide is a chemical substance formed by a reaction between amino acids and sugars. It typically occurs when foods with high starch content such as potatoes, root vegetables, cereal-based foods, bread, coffee and coffee substitutes are cooked at high temperatures (over 120°C). Acrylamide is a suspected carcinogen. The presence of acrylamide in food was initially detected in 2002. Yet in 2015 the EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) stated that current levels of dietary exposure to acrylamide were a growing concern as the levels of acrylamide were not consistently decreasing.
Feras' food safety experts can measure acrylamide in food down to a reporting limit of 30µg/kg in foods and 75µg/kg in coffee and coffee substitutes and the process is accredited by UKAS to ISO17025.
With this in mind Fera have taken a decision to support industry in their routine due diligence testing to lower the standard price for Acrylamide Analysis and remove any minimum sample restrictions.
Commission Regulation (EU) 2017/2158 came into force as of 11 April 2018 introducing mandatory mitigation action and benchmark levels (BLs) of acrylamide in food, with maximum levels (MLs) to follow. It has been recognised in recent times by the ESFA (European Food Safety Authority) that the levels of acrylamide were not consistently decreasing in recent years. In practice, this means that businesses will be required to identify where the hazard of acrylamide formation occurs and then to implement mitigation (or reduction) measures to ensure levels are as low as its reasonably achievable.
If you want further information, read more - "Commission Reg. (EU) on the application of control & mitigation measures to reduce the presence of acrylamide in food"
Benchmark levels are performance indicators, not legally binding. They are however used to verify the effectiveness of mitigation measures. These range from 150µg/kg for biscuits up to 500µg/kg for french fries and 4000µg/kg for chicory based coffee substitutes.
As a result of the legislation, food business operators will be required to sample their products and have them analysed to prove that the acrylamide levels are meeting the benchmark and are as low as reasonably possible. They will be expected to bring in measures to ensure that acrylamide levels are lowered in their products.
When submitting your sample please include the food sample submission form to allow us to process your samples efficiently. Failure to send a sample submission form may result in a delay of your sample being tested.
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