Stop Food Contamination Along the Entire Supply Chain – From Farm to Fork

The health burden of contaminated food should not be underestimated, with around 600 million people becoming victims of a foodborne illness each year, resulting in 420,000 deaths globally according to a recent report by the World Health Organization (WHO). Sadly, children account for 40% of these cases, making food safety a worldwide health priority. Administrations have therefore introduced stringent measures to control food safety and protect the end consumer, including the Food Safety Modernization Act in the U.S., and the General Food Law in the European Union. The issue is clear, and the appropriate measures are in place, but how do manufacturers ensure hazardous items don’t make their way into end products?

Controlling the quality

Unfortunately, there is no panacea to food inspection. Manufacturers must look at their entire operation to ensure food stays contaminant free along the supply chain – from farm to fork – which may involve adopting several technologies for different stages of production. For example, metal detectors can be installed at almost any stage of production to identify metal contaminants – including ferrous and non-ferrous metal, stainless steel, aluminum, and wire. In contrast, X-ray systems can help to detect non-metallic contaminants – such as glass, ceramic, and stones – but are best suited to placement at the end of the production line.

interpack – the biggest day for the food packaging industry

These technologies form the core of many manufacturers’ QC protocol, whether for fresh fruit and vegetables – which undergo minimal processing and handling – or packaged foods that have been through multiple manufacturing processes, increasing the chances of contamination before they are safely wrapped. All of these technologies, as well as other parts of the QC puzzle – such as checkweighers that help manufacturers bring a consistent sized product to market – will be on display at the upcoming interpack international trade fair. This event showcases the latest trends in the packaging industry, covering a variety of sectors – from food and beverage to confectionary and baked goods – across the entire value chain. Thermo Fisher Scientific’s experts will be there (booth C39, hall 15), together with the company’s suite of innovative technologies that help to eliminate defects and deliver consistent and safe products to the end consumer.

For more information on Thermo Fisher’s activities at interpack, please visit

About Thermo Fisher Scientific

Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. is the world leader in serving science, with annual revenue over $40 billion. Our Mission is to enable our customers to make the world healthier, cleaner and safer. Whether our customers are accelerating life sciences research, solving complex analytical challenges, increasing productivity in their laboratories, improving patient health through diagnostics or the development and manufacture of life-changing therapies, we are here to support them. Our global team delivers an unrivaled combination of innovative technologies, purchasing convenience and pharmaceutical services through our industry-leading brands, including Thermo Scientific, Applied Biosystems, Invitrogen, Fisher Scientific, Unity Lab Services, Patheon and PPD. For more information, please visit

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