1000 Foreign Bodies Anticipated

RSSL's microscopy laboratory is anticipating its 1000th foreign body identification project for the food industry this year during the Christmas period.

RSSL relaunched its routine, 5-day turn-round foreign body identification service at the start of 2013, and also offers a more in-depth investigative service.

The Christmas period often sees a peak in foreign body incidents. People are often buying, receiving and preparing food that is unfamiliar, or serving/consuming it in unfamiliar places. This brings potential for the domestic accidents that can introduce foreign bodies into foods. Surprisingly. consumers even identify unfamiliar ingredients as foreign bodies. Inappropriate storage can also lead to precipitation of ingredients, leading consumers to suspect contamination.

"The food industry has done a lot to reduce foreign body incidents," notes Tom Ray, Head of RSSL's microscopy laboratory. "However, despite their best efforts, consumer complaints, both genuine and contrived, continue to arise. Our routine service is a low-cost, high value service that can identify foreign bodies and give manufacturers the information they need to respond to any complaint in the appropriate way. Instead of merely responding with refunds, it is better to understand a foreign body and respond properly. Consumers appreciate a proper explanation of an incident rather than mere refunds or vouchers."

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