Project: Food authenticity – development of 'next generation' analytical technologies to protect the food industry from fraud
Following the recent issues with horse DNA found in meat products, there is increasing concern and interest in all parts of the industry regarding the authenticity and adulteration of foods and raw materials. This follows previous concerns regarding adulteration of milk with melamine and addition of illegal dyes to spices. The concern goes beyond the specific issue of the origin of meat and has been identified as one of the most important issues globally concerning food and drink. Recent events have highlighted the need for member companies to have a resource to help them tackle authenticity issues, and to help them identify suitable modern analytical approaches to verify claims made on packaging and to confirm the identity of raw materials. Non-targeted screening methods are being sought by the food industry since these are not generally available. This project will look at the potential for new and emerging analytical technologies to fill some of these gaps to provide rapid and cost-effective ways of ensuring the authenticity of foods and drinks and detecting adulteration.