HACCP Monitoring

Environmental Testing & Consultancy Services Ltd is your first line of defense for environmental monitoring. We are the leading environmental monitoring laboratory in Saint Lucia assessing microbiological risks and establishing locations for environmental monitoring.

Environmental monitoring helps determine if your food contact surfaces contain any harmful bacteria including Staphylococcus Aureus, Salmonella, Listeria, Bacillus Cereus, E.coli mold etc. Routine environmental monitoring for pathogens is important to ensure that you are processing, plating and preparing food in a safe pathogen free environment.

HACCP Monitoring

There are numerous benefits which make environmental monitoring critical to ensuring a safe production facility.

  • Ensure cleaning and sanitation programs are working and effective against microorganisms
  • Assess the frequency needed for cleaning and sanitation programs
  • Measuring the effectiveness of cleaning of equipment and potential nicheswhich could harbor microorganisms
  • Identify “hotspots”and high risk areas that may need additional care during cleaning
  • Reduce risk potential for pathogen contaminationfrom the production environment

Microorganisms are always present in food production facilities. A thorough sanitation program should be in place to ensure that organisms coming into the facility are not allowed to become permanent residents. 

Pathogens can be introduced into the environment via ingredients, equipment and people.  The processing environment is dynamic and these daily changes require ongoing sanitation and ongoing monitoring.

We test for:

The most common tests that are performed for quality testing include Aerobic Plate Count, Total Coliform, and E. coli. These are known as “indicators” because they are used to assess food safety and sanitation without looking for specific pathogens.  These organisms can be used to determine shelf life, potential risk as well as compliance with set criteria. Quality Testing, or indicator testing, can be used for both product and environmental samples. 

Aerobic Plate Count (APC)

  • Indicator of bacterial level in a food product
  • Gauge of the quality or freshness of a product/how well a surface was cleaned
  • Does not tell you what types of organisms are present
  • May not measure the entire population, only bacteria that grow in the presence of oxygen at a medium temperature range (roughly human body temp)
  • Aerobic Plate Count is also known as
    1. Total Plate Count
    2. Standard Plate Count
    3. Mesophilic Plate Count

Total Coliform

  • Specific group of bacteria that originate in the soil or in animals
  • Common to the environment in which we live and are naturally found  in some products, particularly produce
  • Sanitation procedures should always be in place with the goal of eliminating them from the food processing environment
  • Commonly used as an indicator of the sanitary quality of foods, water, and processing environment
  • Surface testing can indicate potential issues with sanitation procedures and risk for contamination

E.coli (non-pathogenic)

  • Specific type of coliform that originates in the gut of warm-blooded animals and can also be found in environmental reservoirs
  • Many different types of  E.coli, many of them are not harmful
  • For quality testing purposes, the  E.coli being tested is referred to as “non-pathogenic” or “generic” E. coli
  • Used as an indicator of fecal contamination can indicate risk potential for product and food processing environment
  • Different than testing for pathogenic  E.coli which could be most commonly designated as E.coli O157:H7 or other pathogenic strains.
  • Presence of non-pathogenic  E.coli may not indicate pathogenic presence
  • Any  E.coli is a red flag that something went wrong in the process to allow contamination to occur and could indicate a food safety risk

Additional Tests

Environmental Testing & Consultancy Services Ltd. conducts additional tests for environmental monitoring which may be appropriate for your specific application. 

  • Yeast/Mold
  • Salmonella
  • Enterobacteriaceae
  • Listeria
  • S.aureus
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