News archive item
Rapid authenticity testingFrom September 2008 newsletter
The suite of DNA methods available at CCFRA for verifying the authenticity of meat, cheese and seafood products has been enhanced. A service is also now available for the detection of celery and mustard which, as allergens, must be declared on product labels if present. In all cases the methods used are based on DNA amplification.
In the case of meat, the time to perform the analysis has been considerably shortened thanks to the new faster assay format. Coupled to rapid DNA extraction methods, this assay could allow results to be produced within a day in critical cases. New format assays are available for detecting beef, lamb, pork, chicken and turkey. For cheese, DNA amplification coupled to profiling allows the detection of the presence of bovine milk, which will help ensure the authenticity of cheeses and other products made with ewe, goat and buffalo milk.
As a result of FSA funding, methods have been developed to check fish species in canned salmon and tuna. This funding also enabled extension of the fish species DNA profile database, which underpins the authenticity tests and now includes around 200 species. Meanwhile, the service for detecting celery and mustard will help industry and authorities monitor food products for the presence of allergenic ingredients or contaminants.
Contact: Steve Garrett