Protecting Your Brand—Invest in the Right Testing
When looking back at 2018, it’s easy to see how microbiology contamination can create a huge problem. Not being able to have romaine lettuce for salads at Thanksgiving was an obvious side effect to a massive recall because of contamination. Our blog titled, “Avoid the Testing Scramble-Test Early, Test Often” is a great overview of how testing from supply chain through manufacturing, should be handled. That blog addressed the need for developing prototype blends to determine testing interferences before the finished product is manufactured. It’s also important to realize that there can be many potential microbiology contamination points in the manufacturing process and testing microbiology early and often is also needed.
Microbiology testing needs to be strategic and organized. Every touch point in the process must be closely monitored—initial testing of the raw material, then in-process monitoring of equipment, belts, packaging components and final release testing before the product is shipped out. Implementing testing specifications and tight controls of microbiology throughout the manufacturing process will lead to less recalls and increased consumer confidence. Monitoring the microbiology creates a simple quality check that keeps safety top of mind for the consumer.
Most of the recent news has been about Escherichia coli and salmonella contamination, and these are important tests indeed, but you can also look at general tests like total plate counts and coliforms to give you a quick check of quality and help determine if your existing cleaning procedures are effective or need improvement. It’s important to realize that microbiology testing is relatively inexpensive, but can pay huge dividends when helping to avoid expensive recalls and damage to your brand that can be hard to repair. Contact SORA Labs today for all your microbiology testing needs!