content tagged as Food Safety & Defense

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The presence of allergens in food presents a significant health hazard for some consumers and an economic burden for industry. New food ingredients that contain proteins must be thoroughly tested for allergenic potential and foods that contain even traces of new or known allergens must be properly labeled. Although many believe that any dose of an allergen is hazardous, there may be threshold levels under which allergic reactions will not occur, allowing for safe levels of allergen exposure to be determined. Food allergen recalls can be reduced through improved industry awareness and preventative controls. Attendees of this session will learn how to properly test a food ingredient for the potential to cause allergenicity, label products containing allergens, determine when an allergen should be reported, and prevent recalls.
Nearly 15 million people are affected by food allergies in the United States alone, and current global trends show that this number of individuals is increasing, particularly in developed countries. A committee of the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine was charged with examining critical issues related to food allergy, including the prevalence and severity of food allergies and its impact on affected individuals, families, and communities; and current understanding of food allergies as a disease, and in diagnostics, treatments, prevention, and public policy. This consensus study engaged a broad array of stakeholders, including government agencies, organizations, academic institutions, industries, policy makers, and patient organization groups in addition to bringing together leading investigators from relevant fields, clinicians, and parents to engage in review of the issues surrounding food allergies. This symposium highlights the committee’s framework for future directions in several key areas: recommending steps to increase public awareness of food allergies; promoting research on both disease causation and management; and informing preventive approaches to FA; and identifying research gaps and making recommendations to fill them. The symposium also includes perspectives from various stakeholders about managing food allergies, including progress up to now and future plans.
FDA’s Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) went into effect on September 19th, 2016. The law marks a major shift in food safety from a reactionary framework to one that is more prevention and compliance focused. This paradigm shift impacts not only new product and process development, but also renovation and productivity initiatives. Even food-preservation processes, historically deemed safe, receive higher scrutiny under new Regulatory framework. A case in point is acidified foods. Traditionally, foods formulated to pH below 4.6 were considered safe as the acidic environment was considered a barrier to pathogen growth. However, acidified foods are not exempted from 21 CFR 117. An expert panel of speakers will share insights and provide additional clarity on developing FSMA-compliant acidified foods.

As a collaborative session organized by Product Development Division and Quality Assurance Division, we have worked diligently to bring in speakers from industry and academia who are at the front lines of implementing FSMA: product developers, quality assurance, regulatory, consultants, food industry professionals, and academics.

*NOTE: This Short Course begins on Friday, 6/23/17 at 1:00 PM. The new federal regulations coming out of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) require that all companies producing food (not currently under regulatory-required HACCP) have a written Food Safety Plan as well as a Preventive Controls Qualified Individual (PCQI) to create, implement and oversee that Food Safety Plan. This two-and-a-half-day short course will satisfy both requirements to comply with the Hazard Analysis and Risk-based Preventive Controls for Human Foods rule. You will gain the knowledge needed to create a Food Safety Plan and meet the FDA’s training requirement to become your company’s PCQI. The course provides advice from industry professionals, hands-on group activity sessions and documentation to help you develop and implement a preventive controls Food Safety Plan. Medium-sized companies will need to be in compliance with the preventive controls rules by the Fall of 2017. Get started now to ensure that you are ready!

Designed by the Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance (FSPCA), this is the FDA recognized course for training food and beverage industry professionals seeking to become PCQI.


IFT Members: $865
Non-Members: $1,050
Student Members: $350
All rates to increase $100 after May 12, 2017.
Course registration includes continental breakfast, lunch, afternoon beverages, training workbook, and certificate designating you as a PCQI upon successful completion of the exam at the end of the course.

The United States is one of the leading producers of quality poultry and is regarded as a global leader in poultry exports. Recent US poultry production estimates indicate an increase in the value of chicken sales and an increase in the value of egg and turkey production. Since July of 2011 new performance standards have been established by the USDA-FSIS in response to national baseline studies that required routine testing for Salmonella and Campylobacter in all poultry-processing plants, where the percentage of Salmonella-positive samples must be below 7.5% and Campylobacter-positive samples should be less than 10.4%. In addition, in response to curbing the phenomenon of antibiotic resistance in animal production, on June 3, 2015, FDA announced the final rule on the Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) that established requirements relating to distribution and use of VFD drugs and animal feed containing such drugs. With the federal specifications of implementation of more rigorous pathogen reduction standards, it is necessary for the poultry producers, and the meat and egg processors to employ new/alternative or additional interventions for effective control of Salmonella and Campylobacter throughout the pre- and post-harvest poultry safety continuum. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure that poultry producers and products and egg processers are equipped with scientifically validated information to enhance microbial safety, including multidrug resistant bacteria. This session includes an overview of microbial safety and quality of West Virginia locally processed poultry meat followed by an updated research of control strategies on Salmonella/Campylobacter on chicken carcasses, parts, and eggs. In addition, alternative strategies that have the potential against multidrug resistant bacteria in poultry will be presented. Following that, the role of antibiotics on poultry egg microbial safety will be discussed. Finally, an industry scale in-plant validation study of antimicrobial application in various poultry processes will conclude the session. The invited speakers will represent expertise from the food industry, government research institutions, and academia.
The food industry is being challenged daily on various food safety and quality issues, which often happen unexpectedly and with high cost or risk associated. One common example is foreign materials (including foreign chemicals/microorganisms and foreign objects) or contaminations, which frequently surface both from food manufacturing and consumers. Other problems involving processing or quality (i.e. off color, off flavor, off odor, change of physical properties, sedimentation, loss of ingredient functionality, adulteration, etc.) could be easily perceived as a food safety issue by normal consumers. Therefore, it is vital for the food industry to address these issues before the product reaches the market. However, investigation of these problems and to find the root cause and solution involve not only time and effort, but also extensive scientific knowledge and advanced technologies.

Due to the limitation of resources and capabilities, analytical labs across the food industry often focus food-forensics investigations on specific areas, such as foreign material ID. The broad definition of food forensics covers most of the unexpected, unusual, and urgent safety and quality issues in food production. This symposium aims to bring scientists and experts from both the food industry and academia together to share learnings and experiences on food forensics. The invited presentations will focus on the development of new tools, methodologies, and investigation processes to solve forensic problems such as foreign materials/contaminations, off color, off odor, loss of functionality, etc. Discussions on food forensic investigation strategy and the application of criminology forensic science to food problems will also be covered. The session will benefit those who work in food production, food safety, quality control, and technical services, as well as regular food consumers.
The use of luminescent compounds and optical luminescent techniques in food science and engineering applications has been mostly limited to: (1) assessing food composition (e.g., quantification of vitamins), (2) detecting specific contaminants (e.g., aflatoxins) or, more recently, (3) authenticating specific foods (e.g., luminescence fingerprinting of olive oil). However, recent systematic study of the environmental sensitivities of lumiphores relevant to foods and their basic photophysical properties has significantly expanded the use and applicability of specific luminescent compounds and optical techniques in food research and development. This symposium will cover recent advances in optical luminescence techniques including the development and applicability of optical sensors of food quality and safety, the utilization of intrinsic and extrinsic luminescent probes to follow important technological processes such as formation and stability of delivery systems, and the identification of lumiphores as effective photosensitizers for microbial inactivation.

This symposium will first familiarize the audience with basic photophysical principles and explain how the photophysical properties of lumiphores respond to, and potentially report on, specific chemical and physical properties of a food matrix.

Second, it will discuss the use of noninvasive edible luminescent probes as sensors of food quality, stability and safety in real time. Particular emphasis will be given to molecular rotors since these edible fluorescent compounds offer a non-disruptive and highly sensitive alternative to conventional mechanical methodologies to evaluate the physical properties of foods.

Third, it will provide an overview on the use of optical techniques to measure interfacial processes in food systems and how they can assist in the design and development of novel colloidal carriers. Optical spectroscopy can help to elucidate formation and disintegration mechanisms of delivery systems, especially those of protein based nanoparticles using intrinsic and extrinsic optical probes. Significance of the results and applicability of the proposed measurements will also be covered.

Finally, advances on the use of optical edible compounds as photosensitizers for in situ microbial inactivation will be presented. The recent identification of edible and effective photosensitizers offers a promising alternative to current antimicrobials, particularly for fresh produce applications, due to their GRAS status and the lack of harmful residues.

We expect the audience to gain an overall understanding of the new advances on optical measurements pertinent to the food industry. The combination of the inherent advantages of luminescence spectroscopy—site specific, versatile, non-invasive, rapid, sensitive, and inexpensive—with the attraction of safe and environmentally friendly green molecules that enable measurements in-line during manufacturing or in situ during distribution and use can be of particular importance within the food, medical, and pharmaceutical arenas. Additionally, the implementation of advanced optical techniques will generate insights on the important mechanisms in food processes and help in their optimization and monitoring.
Food security, as defined by United Nations (UN), exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and, nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life. As the world population continues to grow, the challenges in managing limited resources to feed them will require significant improvements in technology, management strategies, and policies that enhance food security. While contributing factors to food insecurity are debatable, increased use of farm commodities in biofuels, increased oil prices, global population growth, climate change, loss of agricultural land to residential and industrial development, rising food prices, environmental stressors, high losses and waste, and growing consumer demand in developing countries have an impact on food security. In order to ensure sufficient, safe, and nutritious food globally, strategies and policy responses to global changes in land-use patterns, food trade, pre- and post-harvest food processing, food preservation, and food safety are urgently needed. Enhanced food safety is key to improvements in health and nutrition, both of which are goals of enhanced food security. Therefore food safety, nutrition, and food security are inextricably linked. This symposium session will bring subject-matter experts together as panelists to discuss issues on (1) priorities and challenges from government and private sector’s standpoints on food safety and food security in various parts of the world, (2) policies and strategies leading to robust food-safety control programs at country level, (3) effective recognition of women's actual roles and responsibilities in global food security, and (4) the role of research and development strategies on reducing food losses and expanding markets for improved food security and economic growth.
New requirements for the food industry and new authorities to enforce these requirements: the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), signed into law in 2011, affects every entity that produce, import, distribute, manufacture, and transport of food, not only for the US food industry members but also for foreign suppliers. This roundtable is a collection of testimonials from academia, industry, and the consumer’s perspective. All parties will offer their experience and they will illustrate and report how this complex regulation has impacted their daily professional life.

Dr. Fadi Aramouni from Kansas State University will give an overview of training and engaging activities for small and medium size processors organized by the Food Science Institute at KSU. Dr. Peyman Fatemi will offer the industrial perspective on how the preventative controls for human food rule has really changed the game of prevention of hazards, and finally, Dr. Melinda Hayman will report the stakeholder perspective and commitment to FSMA rules for produce safety, foreign supplier verification, and third-party accreditation.
Microbial models have been increasingly used by professionals in the food industry, research institutes, and regulatory agencies for a wide range of purposes such as product and process development, shelf-life prediction, setting performance standards, evaluating regulatory compliance and microbial risk assessment. This workshop will introduce the principles of predictive microbiology and demonstrate how to develop models and the use of models for real-world applications. This workshop will also demonstrate how to use the USDA Integrate Pathogen Modeling Program (IPMP) for model development. The USDA IPMP is an easy-to-use, user-friendly software tool that allows anyone, without the knowledge of computer programming and statistics, to efficiently develop predictive models. Examples will be used to demonstrate the step-by-step procedure in model development. This workshop will also demonstrate a new one-step methodology for developing more accurate predictive models. In this workshop, audiences will learn the essence of predictive microbiology and the applications of an advanced data analysis tool for developing microbial models and become proficient in developing and using predictive models for their applications.