What we do

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Laboratory

The laboratory department (analyses and studies) offers a wide range of microbiology services for foodstuffs and water.

We also offer a range of use-by date analysis services, helping you to extend or check the life spans of your food products.

We have obtained international recognition for the quality of our laboratory activities, under BELAC 135-TEST accreditation to the ISO/IEC 17025 standard. This standard covers all key parameters and methods for food and water microbiology testing.

One of Quality Partner’s strengths is its ability to offer its clients cutting-edge, hands-on scientific support. We work with our clients at every stage of the process, developing a dedicated, balanced annual sampling plan to monitor your routine analyses on an ad-hoc basis.

Quality Partner also handles your samples, to ensure they are transported in the very best possible conditions.

Inspection plan

The food and water microbiology laboratory offers one of the largest range of accredited analysis services. We are able to calculate hygiene indicators and count or search for potentially harmful bacteria using both traditional and alternative methods (such as Spiral, Tempo™ and Vidas™). These alternatives are often quicker and more effective than traditional methods.

Use-by date approval

Use-by date verification: Quality Partner is able to check the microbiological use-by date of chilled foodstuffs, in line with the AFNOR NF-V-01-003 standard and major retailers’ specifications. We carry out carefully selected microbiological analyses on your products, based on a clearly defined temperature scenario.

Challenge test

Microbiological “challenge test” (accredited exclusively for L. monocytogenes challenge tests according to FASFC notice 09-2006): The purpose of these “challenge tests” is to check the growth or inhibition of a given bacterium (e.g. Listeria monocytogenes) in a particular foodstuff. The results of these tests may be used as evidence for more tolerant microbiological criteria in dealings with FASFC. Quality Partner simulates accidental contamination of a foodstuff by a pathogenic or harmful bacterium, through artificial inoculation at a known concentration. The laboratory then monitors, at defined intervals, the growth of the bacterium or bacteria in the foodstuff, once it has been repackaged (in line with production conditions) and stored under temperature-controlled conditions.

Authenticity

Authenticity is an increasingly important concern in the food processing industry – as in many other sectors. Quality Partner’s subsidiary, Genalyse Partner, offers a range of tests that can be used to confirm the nature, origin or composition of a foodstuff. These include:

  • Detection of traces of pork meat in “halal” foodstuffs
  • Quantification of pork/beef content in minced meat products
  • Identification of plant species and comparison with composition information

Metagenomics

In the food processing industry, metagenomics involves identifying ALL micro-organisms present in a foodstuff or other medium.

This new analysis method offers truly revolutionary possibilities in a number of food-related areas. It can help to:

  • improve quality through the identification and monitoring of harmful bacteria during the foodstuff ageing process
  • identify the origin of foodstuff contamination
  • fully assess any changes in the production chain in order to extend a product’s shelf life
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