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Detect Higher Risk Food Products

By | Blog

Is Your Food Product at High Risk for Listeria Contamination?

 

The FDA recommends that your environmental monitoring procedures use a risk-based approach in which you establish strategies for environmental monitoring. In general, the greater the risk that an RTE food could become contaminated with L. monocytogenes and support growth of the organism, the greater the frequency of environmental sampling and testing, and the more stringent the corrective actions.

The following questions may be used to determine if a food product is lower or higher risk.

Does the food receive a listericidal treatment to adequately reduce L. monocytogenes?
Yes (Lower Risk) / No (Higher Risk)

Is the food formulated to prevent the growth of L. monocytogenes or be lethal to L. monocytogenes (e.g., through intrinsic characteristics such as pH or water activity)?
Yes (Lower Risk) / No (Higher Risk)

How much handling does the food receive subsequent to a pathogen reduction step and prior to packaging?
Minimal (Lower Risk) / Extensive (Higher Risk)

Does the food receive a listericidal control measure in the package?
Yes (Lower Risk) / No (Higher Risk)

What is the shelf life of the product during refrigerated storage?
Short (Lower Risk) / Long (Higher Risk)

Does the packaged RTE food support the growth of L. monocytogenes under normal storage conditions?
Yes (Lower Risk) / No (Higher Risk)

 

For more information, read the FDA’s “Control of Listeria monocytogenes in Ready-To-Eat Foods: Guidance for Industry Draft Guidance

Help Your Team Stop the Spread of Listeria

By | Blog

Best Practices for Food Safety Personnel


Unknowingly, your team can transfer L. monocytogenes from the processing environment to the food. Following are recommendations from the Food and Drug Administration to help stop this spread.

Everyday Practices

Wash hands thoroughly before entering RTE food processing area.

Use utensils or wear gloves when touching exposed RTE Foods, food-contact surfaces and packaging materials.

Gloves and footwear should be impermeable, in good shape and easily cleanable or disposable.

Keep RTE gloves and footwear contained to RTE areas in your plant.

 

Clothing

Establish and implement conditions and practices to prevent employee clothing from contributing to the contamination of food with L. monocytogenes. Depending on the type of operation, such conditions and practices include:

Cover street clothes from the knee and up before entering RTE area.

Smocks and uniforms laundered or disposed of daily.

RTE uniforms distinguished from non-RTE uniforms and worn only in RTE areas.

 

Gloves

Here are the FDA’s recommendations for glove usage in your plant.

Wash your hands before putting the gloves on.

Wash and sanitize multi-use gloves before use.

Discard or sanitize gloves after employee touches any non-food contact surface or leaves RTE area.

 

For more information on FDA recommendations on how to minimize Listeria Monocytogenes in your plant, see the “Control of Listeria monocytogenes in Ready-To-Eat Foods: Guidance for Industry Draft Guidance Guide.

CERTUS R&D Update December 1, 2017

By | Press

CERTUS Begins Salmonella Test Development

 

With the CERTUS Environmental Listeria (CERTUS EL) test on its way into validation, CERTUS looks to expand its rapid food pathogen detection menu.  In 2018, CERTUS will expand its pipeline with the initiation of the development of an Environmental Salmonella assay.  In January of 2012, the CDC estimated that Salmonella was the cause of one million food-borne illnesses in the United States, with 19,000 hospitalizations and 380 deaths.   Globally, the WHO estimates that Salmonella is the leading cause food-borne pathogen death.  Therefore, CERTUS remains committed to developing tools to help food producers protect their consumers from these dangerous pathogens.

The CERTUS Environmental Salmonella assay will be based on the same proprietary Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS) technology and instrument platform as the CERTUS EL test.  Therefore, the CERTUS Environmental Salmonella test will provide the same benefits to the user as the CERTUS EL test:  extremely simple workflow, on-site testing capabilities, real-time growth monitoring, immediate alerts upon detection and biocontainment for the safety of the user and the environment.

CERTUS’s Grow, Read, Detect™ assay format allows for real-time detection of Salmonella from environmental surfaces.   The assay is being designed to run in a single enrichment media, homogenous no wash format.  This means that no sample manipulation is required and that the assay tube never has to be opened once the swab is inserted.  As with the CERTUS EL assay, the CERTUS Salmonella assay will be delivered in a Bio-Lock™ tube/cap design that cannot be opened after enrichment begins, thus securing the environment from accidental contamination.  This feature, combined with the target time-to-result goal of less than 24 hours, enables food producers to move testing on-site for significantly faster results.

Reagent research and development is being conducted in collaboration with CERTUS research partner, Solus Scientific, a UK based food pathogen assay developer.  Solus Scientific is the developer and manufacturer of their own Listeria, Salmonella and E. coli ELISA designed for large volume sample processing.  Solus is also the assay development partner for the CERTUS EL assay used in the CERTUS System.

Clean Your RTE Plant in 7 Steps

By | Blog

The 7 Step Cleaning Process for your RTE plant

 

In their “Control of Listeria monocytogenes in Ready-To-Eat Foods: Guidance for Industry Draft Guidance Guide,” the Food and Drug Administration offers their recommended cleaning procedure for ready-to-eat food processing plants including carefully sequenced cleaning actions followed by a sanitizing procedure. The FDA recommends that your written sanitation procedures include the following steps:

  1. Dry Clean – Using appropriate tools (such as brushes, scrapers), remove heavy soils or debris from equipment, then floors;
  2. Pre-Rinse –  Working from the top of the equipment down, rinse and scrub equipment to remove visible soils. Using appropriate tools, remove any additional debris from the floors and drains, and then rinse the floor;
  3. Soap and Scour – Apply foam cleaner to ensure adequate coverage by first foaming walls (if applicable), floors, and then the equipment from the bottom of the equipment to the top. Clean drains using appropriate tools. Scour equipment to remove any residues, and avoid the drying of the foam cleaner;
  4. Post-Rinse –  Remove the foam cleaner by flood rinsing the walls (if applicable), floors and equipment in the same order that the foam cleaner was applied;
  5. Prepare for Inspection – Remove any possible overhead condensation or standing water and prepare the equipment for inspection;
  6. Pre-Op Inspection – Visually inspect the equipment for cleaning effectiveness and correct any deficiencies;
  7. Sanitize and Assemble –  Sanitize the equipment, floors, and (if applicable) walls and prepare the equipment for operation using ATP bioluminescence or other appropriate testing as a sanitation check.

For more information, read the full FDA Guidance.

5 Advantages of the Solus System vs. Market Leaders

By | Blog

CERTUS is proud to bring Solus Pathogen Detection System to the United States and introduce it to the market where it currently offers significant benefits over leading immunoassay systems.

Solus Salmonella and Solus Listeria ELISA kits, proprietary media, and DS2 (2 plate ELISA processing system) streamline your workflow, technician time, and costs to offer you a high-throughput, reliable and robust pathogen detection system.

Here are 5 reasons why Solus Pathogen Detection System outperforms market leaders.

  1. Throughput

It’s simple.  Solus ELISA coupled with a single DS2 unit (instrument and PC), can run 2 plates or 192 samples in a total of 185 minutes.  That is an average of 1.04 minutes per sample.  It is therefore possible on one DS2 unit to run 500 samples per day in one 8 hour shift.

The most popular system on the market in the U.S. can run under 200 samples a day on one machine.  To meet the throughput of the Solus System you would require three of our competitor’s machines with instrumentation.

  1. Time

Time is money and time is limited.  One of the main advantages of Solus Pathogen Detection System over competitors is the efficient workflow, which truly frees up technician time. After the standard enrichment protocol, the hands-on technician time needed to prepare 192 samples for testing on DS2 (including instrument set up) takes well under an hour.  The instrument then runs the 192 samples in 2.5 hours fully automated, meaning the technician is free to perform other lab duties.

  1. Lab Footprint

Many labs struggle with space allocation and cold storage capacity and Solus Pathogen Detection System rightly addresses this issue.

One Solus kit contains enough reagents to process 480 samples whereas current market leader’s kit only contains sufficient materials for 60 samples within a slightly larger box. Additionally, DS2 is only 21 inches in width, freeing up valuable bench space for other instrumentation.

  1. Room for Growth and Scalability

Solus Pathogen Detection System is perfectly poised to scale up with your lab and growth needs.  A trained technician could simultaneously prep and run three DS2’s at once if need be. This would yield nearly 1,675 tests in one 8-hour work day. Additionally, DS2 is a customized open-based ELISA system that could also run allergens, mycotoxins, etc. to truly fit your daily testing needs.

  1. Cost Savings

Cost is the bottom line for most companies. Solus Pathogen Detection System offers not only attractive price-per-test for a complete system, but overall cost savings are also achieved in the bigger financial picture. Smaller box size means less waste and thus less to dispose of and reduced shipping cost. Concentrated formulas and reduced box size mean less cold storage, less overhead cost. Finally, freeing up technician time through the automated system allows technicians to perform other tasks, streamlining labor needs and allowing your workforce to work efficiently and on a variety of projects.

If you are interested in chatting more about the other advantages of Solus Pathogen Detection System or to set up a live demo, please contact me at Shelby.degalan@certusfoodsafety.com or at 872-810-4123.  We are looking forward to demonstrating how Solus Pathogen Detection System can fit your testing needs!

Cleanroom Technology 10-11-17

By | News

CERTUS wins license deal for rapid pathogen detection in food

Partnership brings innovation and expertise together to provide a highly efficient process to detect Salmonella, Listeria and E.coli O157

The Solus Pathogen Detection System for the detection of Salmonella,
Listeria and E.coli O157 pathogen

 

An innovator in food safety technologies, CERTUS has announced an expanded partnership with Solus Scientific for the immediate distribution of the Solus Pathogen Testing System across the United States food safety market.

For use by food safety testing labs, the Solus Pathogen Detection System is a highly efficient process for detection of Salmonella, Listeria and E.coli O157 pathogens.

Using proprietary antibodies and production methods optimised to deliver excellent performance; the system offers labs increased power, performance and profits through automated immunoassays delivering high test throughput, lab resource efficiencies and cost savings.

CERTUS President, John Coomes said: “Labs across the country are in need of a powerful, efficient and cost effective system to ensure food is safe for everyone in our country. We’re proud to grow our partnership with Solus to bring such a solution to the U.S. Marketplace.”

The cornerstone of the Solus Pathogen Detection System is the company’s proprietary immunoassay, based on enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The system is available in a manual, or a fully-automated, self-contained option (Solus DS2 Automated Laboratory ELISA), able to process 192 samples in one run including simple load-to-results on-screen instructions for technicians.

 

Full Article

Food Quality News 10-9-17

By | News

Certus expands Solus partnership with US distribution

By Joseph James Whitworth

Certus is to distribute the Solus Scientific pathogen detection system in the US for detection of Salmonella, Listeria and E.coli O157.

Full Article

The National Provisioner 10-9-17

By | News

CERTUS announces US distribution of Solus Pathogen Detection System for food safety labs

CERTUS, innovators in food safety technologies, announced an expanded partnership with Solus Scientific for the immediate distribution of the Solus Pathogen Testing System across the United States food safety market. For use by food safety testing labs, the Solus Pathogen Detection System is a highly efficient process for detection of Salmonella, Listeria and E.coli O157 pathogens. Utilizing proprietary antibodies and production methods optimized to deliver excellent performance; the system offers labs increased power, performance and profits through automated immunoassays delivering high test throughput, lab resource efficiencies and cost savings.

“Aligning with our company’s laser-like focus on reducing food-borne illness, the Solus Pathogen Detection System has the ability to dramatically increase lab productivity and efficiency, a critical factor in the rising needs of the industry,” says CERTUS President, John Coomes. “Labs across the country are in need of a powerful, efficient and cost effective system to ensure food is safe for everyone in our country. We’re proud to grow our partnership with Solus to bring such a solution to the U.S. marketplace.”

The cornerstone of the Solus Pathogen Detection System is the company’s proprietary immunoassay, based on enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The system is available in a manual, or a fully-automated, self-contained option (Solus DS2 Automated Laboratory ELISA), able to process 192 samples in one run including simple load-to-results on-screen instructions for technicians.

“For food testing labs to use the Solus Pathogen Detection System makes both commercial and scientific sense, as we have enabled a proven technology to be automated, increasing throughput efficiency and productivity,” said Ray Wakefield, CEO of Solus. “Our partnership with CERTUS gives American third party labs a powerful and AOAC validated alternative that this market is demanding.”

In addition to distribution of the Solus Pathogen Detection System, CERTUS recently announced the launch of the CERTUS System, a unique bio-contained, in-house solution for pathogen detection for small and mid-sized food processing plants. Making food safer by providing producers fast, easy, direct and cost effective ways to detect environmental Listeria, the CERTUS System utilizes key technologies co-developed with Solus Scientific.

As part of its commitment to meet the increasing needs for pathogen detection across the global food production industry, CERTUS intends to continuously deliver advanced tools and strong technical support to a broad spectrum of food manufacturers and improve the safety of the global food supply.

To learn more, visit http://CertusFoodSafety.com or call at 872-810-4123.

 

Full Article

Press Release October 4, 2017

By | Press

CERTUS™ Announces U.S. Distribution of Solus Pathogen Detection System for Food Safety Labs

Partnership brings innovation and expertise together to provide a highly efficient process to detect Salmonella, Listeria and E.coli O157

Chicago, Illinois – October 4, 2017 – Today, CERTUS™, innovators in food safety technologies, announced an expanded partnership with Solus Scientific for the immediate distribution of the Solus Pathogen Testing System across the United States food safety market. For use by food safety testing labs, the Solus Pathogen Detection System is a highly efficient process for detection of Salmonella, Listeria and E.coli O157 pathogens. Utilizing proprietary antibodies and production methods optimized to deliver excellent performance; the system offers labs increased power, performance and profits through automated immunoassays delivering high test throughput, lab resource efficiencies and cost savings.


“Aligning with our company’s laser-like focus on reducing food-borne illness, the Solus Pathogen Detection System has the ability to dramatically increase lab productivity and efficiency, a critical factor in the rising needs of the industry,” says CERTUS President, John Coomes. “Labs across the country are in need of a powerful, efficient and cost effective system to ensure food is safe for everyone in our country. We’re proud to grow our partnership with Solus to bring such a solution to the U.S. marketplace.”

The cornerstone of the Solus Pathogen Detection System is the company’s proprietary immunoassay, based on enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). The system is available in a manual, or a fully-automated, self-contained option (Solus DS2 Automated Laboratory ELISA), able to process 192 samples in one run including simple load-to-results on-screen instructions for technicians.  

 

“For food testing labs to use the Solus Pathogen Detection System makes both commercial and scientific sense, as we have enabled a proven technology to be automated, increasing throughput efficiency and productivity,” said Ray Wakefield, CEO of Solus. “Our partnership with CERTUS gives American third party labs a powerful and AOAC validated alternative that this market is demanding.”

 

In addition to distribution of the Solus Pathogen Detection System, CERTUS recently announced the launch of the CERTUS System, a unique bio-contained, in-house solution for pathogen detection for small and mid-sized food processing plants. Making food safer by providing producers fast, easy, direct and cost effective ways to detect environmental Listeria, the CERTUS System utilizes key technologies co-developed with Solus Scientific.

 

As part of its commitment to meet the increasing needs for pathogen detection across the global food production industry, CERTUS intends to continuously deliver advanced tools and strong technical support to a broad spectrum of food manufacturers and improve the safety of the global food supply.

 

ABOUT CERTUS™

CERTUS changes the way food safety testing is done, and helps reduce food-borne illness with a new generation of food pathogen detection devices and processes that are precise, affordable and easy to use.  Making rapid pathogen detection and prevention Simple, Safe and Smart, CERTUS is built on the foundations of empowerment, simplicity, precision, and integrity.  CERTUS seeks to integrate historically embraced values into future technology to bring innovation and expansive vision to the food safety industry.  CERTUS joins the Toho Technology group of companies as a new brand specializing in Food Safety.  Founded in 1819 in Nagoya, Japan, Toho is a privately-held company that provides engineering, manufacture, distribution and support of diverse industrial and life-science technologies to customers around the world.  With significant expertise in precision instrumentation and equipment sales, Toho Technology advances the way products are made, tested and verified within the fields of food safety, healthcare, and nanotechnologies. The company currently operates multiple facilities in Chicago, Illinois; Japan; Shanghai, China and Jakarta, Indonesia. Toho Technology Inc. is the launch site for the CERTUS global expansion with all R&D, operations and sales centered in its Chicago location.

 

For Media Inquiries Contact: Candace Taylor :: Email: candace.taylor@certusfoodsafety.com :: Call us at 872-810-4123

Full Article

Quality Assurance & Food Safety 9-28-17

By | News

Certus Advances Commercialization of Rapid Pathogen Detection System

The system is enabled by BD’s proprietary SERS nanoparticle technology.

September 28, 2017

Certus, an innovator in food safety technologies, has signed an exclusive license agreement with the global medical technology company, Becton, Dickinson and Company (BD), for use of its rapid pathogen-detection technology. Enabled by BD’s proprietary SERS nanoparticle technology, the newly introduced Certus System will make food safer by providing small to mid-sized producers fast, easy and cost-effective ways to detect environmental Listeria in food processing environments and the food itself prior to reaching consumers, the company said.

“This is a critical agreement for Certus as BD’s technology provides the foundation of our patented Grow, Read, Detect system giving producers real-time monitoring through simultaneous enrichment and detection,” said Certus President John Coomes. “We believe our approach, backed by BD’s long-standing expertise in nanotechnology, is a significant industry breakthrough that radically simplifies what was once a complex process. This will enable any food processor to conduct safe and easy on-site testing, receive instant alerts, and take action to remediate any issues.”

BD’s exclusive license to Certus also includes technology to enable pathogen detection in a bio-contained tube during enrichment so that the facility where the testing is conducted is not exposed to enriched pathogens. BD continues to work with partners to further develop the SERS technology and is the supplier of SERS nanoparticles used in Certus products. The first commercial Certus System will be launched in 2018 for environmental monitoring and prevention of Listeria spp.

“The beauty of our system is that anyone with minimal training will simply swab a surface, add media to our Bio-Lock Detection Tube, and insert the tube into the detection unit to start getting rapid results,” Coomes said. “There is no need for centrifuges, incubators, pipettes, stomachers, bags or other ancillary items and steps that current methods require.”

Since its IAFP debut earlier this year, Certus has developed multiple prototypes which are now being used in the U.S. and Europe for optimization of the Certus EL Detection kit. Further development of the system will involve seeking AOAC validation and launching a research and development program for Certus Environmental Salmonella Detection Kits. For more information on Certus visit certusfoodsafety.com.

 

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