As a leading provider of analysis and testing services to the global food and agricultural industries, we are constantly improving our methods and designing new ways in order to achieve a safer, more sustainable and traceable food and beverage supply chain.
There are many reasons why premium food quality safety and traceability screening is important, from combating food fraud to supporting product labelling. Food safety, quality and traceability are of significant importance to everyone involved in the manufacturing and distribution of food products and services. The cost of a product or process failure is measured in more than just money, it can inflict lasting harm to your reputation.
We know that businesses rely on our leading safety solutions and expertise to help build their brands and improve food safety, sustainability and operational efficiency while reducing food waste.
As a result we offer extensive authenticity analysis capabilities across a range of samples, such as our extensive Manuka honey testing ability, where we can highlight the presence of Manuka’s active ingredients within one ‘Quad Test’. We also are the only laboratory in UK to be the preferred partner by the UMF® Honey Association as an official testing laboratory for independently verifying the UMF® rating of Manuka honey.
In the UK, wine consumption continues to grow year on year, as high quality products are sold at ever improving value to the consumer in a competitive and saturated market. This can put producers under pressure to create products at a lower price point - leading to underhand cost saving methods being used. This has a negative effect on quality of produce, through tactics such as chaptalisation, the addition of artificial colorants or acid additions.
Fera’s innovative methods can highlight these tactics via a plethora of wine analysis methods. By utilising a multidisciplinary approach, Fera can provide an overall snapshot of wine samples, evaluating their quality against known and lesser known adulteration tactics.
Overall isotope ratio methods are used as the backbone of our wine analysis capability, utilising UKAS accredited approaches to match your sample to known datasets, showing us increasingly useful insights into the product makeup - including geographical origin and basic composition. These insights can verify the authenticity of your products, strengthening your brand and putting your customers at ease.
Polyphosphates are legally permitted additives that are widely used to aid processing of foods including meat and fish products.
Polyphosphates analysis helps the food and fish industry to ensure their product label claims for adding polyphosphates to their seafood products are correct and provides assurance that products don’t contain any unwanted added phosphates.
This method detects the amount of 'added' phosphates in seafood products, distinguishing between the naturally occurring levels of phosphates and the level of added phosphates. In prawns, monophosphate is naturally occurring, where as di-phosphate and tri-phosphate are not, therefore the detection of di-phosphate and tri-phosphate in prawns would confirm the use of polyphosphates. Fera has developed a NMR (nuclear magnetic resonance) based in-house validated test that successfully differentiates between the different forms of phosphates in prawns.
This Defra-funded project aims to benefit consumers by providing a fast turnaround method to determine the origin of gelatine in foods. As gelatine is a highly processed product (and a high level of processing disrupts DNA and proteins), it is difficult to determine the species of origin as methods such as DNA analyses and protein analyses by immunoassays.
Fera is using gelatine peptides from a proprietary database to develop and validate a faster method than currently exists to determine the species origin and provide a high throughput, fast-turnaround technology. The method uses instruments which are widely available globally and the aim is to serve consumers with high volume fast turnaround tests to verify the authenticity of food products. In addition to screening for porcine and bovine gelatines, we have also developed the capacity to screen for chicken and equine gelatine.
Through this project, we aim to detect adulterated gelatine in samples containing as little as 0.1% of the adulterated gelatine.
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