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Campden microbiological and fat replacement guidance.

New guidance from Campden BRI will help companies to adopt a standardised approach to determine if microorganisms of significance could grow in their products, and thus affect shelf-life.

Microbiological challenge testing is the laboratory simulation of what can happen microbiologically to a product during distribution and subsequent handling if it were to be contaminated with a microorganism. The use of challenge testing to assess product safety and stability has increased over the past few years, particularly with respect to Clostridium botulinum and Listeria monocytogenes, where evidence is required to demonstrate that there is minimal potential for growth of these organisms throughout shelf-life.

This guideline Challenge testing protocols for assessing the safety and quality of food and drink (Guideline 63) contains the necessary information for companies wishing to follow a standardised protocol for challenge testing their food products.

Gail Betts, who edited the document, commented: 'With significant input from both industry and the Food Standards Agency, this document will be of major benefit to companies who produce products which could potentially support the growth and/or survival of problem microorganisms'.

In view of the recent report by NICE (the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence) on the effect of trans fats in food on health, it is timely that Campden BRI has published Important and useful information for new product development personnel who have been challenged with reducing the fat content of products containing meat, such as sausages or pies.

Reducing the fat content of meat products: a review of fat replacement (Review No. 65) provides a background in fat chemistry and summarises the implications of removing fat from meat products. It outlines the methods used to reduce fat in product trials conducted worldwide, including the use of fat replacers' in different products, and reviews the literature concerning methods for reducing the fat content of meat products.

With increasing numbers of people in the UK, USA and Europe becoming obese, and the consequent serious effects on health and increase the risk of heart disease, there is a drive for the food industry to produce reduced fat products, and in particular to moderate levels of saturated fat. Although this comes primarily from government policy, consumers are also becoming more aware of what they eat, leading to market demand for healthier products.

Contact Campden BRI on tel 01386 84225 or visit
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Title Annotation:INFORMALIA
Publication:Food Trade Review
Date:Jun 1, 2010
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