Protecting the food supply chain from fraud and malicious attack

Every few years, an intentional adulteration of the food supply grabs headlines around the world. In 2008, Chinese dairy manufacturers added the chemical melamine, a plasticizing agent, to milk and infant formula to boost the detectable protein levels, resulting in the hospitalization of 54,000 children and six deaths. The 2013 EU horse meat scandal, in which horse meat was substituted for beef in products sold across the EU, severely damaged consumer confidence in traceability and testing standards for meat products. Perhaps even more disturbing is the possibility of intentional contamination of the food supply to cause harm, a possibility that has gained more attention in the age of global terrorism. 

With the complexity of today’s international food supply chain, it is vital that the food industry move beyond food safety and quality approaches to incorporate food fraud—to protect against intentional contamination for economic gain—and food defence—to protect against intentional contamination to cause harm. … Read more...

Intelex Attends the 4th Annual Food Quality Symposium

Bevin Lyon and Jeremy Mawson are representing Intelex’s Food and Beverage team at the NLS Food Quality Symposium this week in Indian Wells, California. The symposium is now in its fourth year and features industry networking and thought leadership from some of the world’s leading food manufacturers. Among the attendees are a few Intelex clients, including Bimbo Bakeries, Hillshire Brands and The Wornick Company.

Hot topics of conversation this year are the Food Safety Modernization Act and the recommendations for food defense measures that have been developed by FSIS and FDA.

Intelex’s Food and Beverage team helps companies manage suppliers, ensure compliance, keep their workforces safe and ensure the quality of their products. For a full list of Intelex’s food and beverage clients, visit our clients page.… Read more...

Corporate recycling, sunny side-up

Food manufacturing and packaging go hand in hand.  What may not be so obvious, however, is that the links between the two are about to become a lot more, er, ineggstricable. That’s right, thanks to some pioneering work out of England, we’ve learned that eggs themselves may contain the answers to some of the world’s environmental woes. 

Scientists out of the University of Leicester in England are currently investigating the use of disposed eggshells, which currently either end up in landfill or are used in pharmaceuticals to help with cartilage and connective tissue problems. The biodegradable proteins found in the egg shell can be potentially formed into a starch-based plastic very similar to numerous forms of existing materials used in packaging warehouses. Sounds simple, but the outcome could bring great change to the packaging world. Find out more here

As the article explains: The aim of the current project … Read more...

First FSMA rules in effect July 3. Are you ready?

Earlier this week the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced the first set of rules under the landmark Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), legislation signed earlier this year which gives the FDA sweeping powers to prevent food safety disasters.

The two new rules, which take effect July 3, are pretty logical preventive measures that, in all fairness, probably should have been implemented a long time ago. The new rules are as follows:

  • Order on Administration Detention of Food: The first new rule gives the FDA the authority to hold food products that may be contaminated or mislabeled. Before now, the administration only had the right to detain food when it had sufficient evidence it was mislabeled or contaminated, thereby presenting a threat to humans or animals. Now if the FDA even suspects contamination or mislabeling, it can detain the product.
  • Rule on Imported Food:  Organizations importing food now have
Read more...

U.S. Senate prepares to modernize food safety legislation

Now that the U.S. Senate has reconvened after a month-long recess during which large-scale salmonella-related egg recalls made headlines across the country, food safety reform is back on the top of the agenda.

The Senate is currently reviewing S. 510, a food safety bill that would give the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) significant powers of oversight and regulation on the growing and production of food. 

And it might be about time for this kind of reform. Not only have 85 food recalls occurred in the U.S.—not to mention this summer’s massive egg recall as well as other salmonella- and listeria-based recalls—since the House of Representatives passed a similar bill about a year ago, S. 510 is the first large piece of legislation to address food safety in more than 70 years.

In fact, currently the FDA doesn’t even really have the power to hold food growers and producers accountable … Read more...