This page is for member news and announcements related to food authenticity. Members are invited to post brief articles or announcements concerning new products or services that may help other members monitor, detect or manage food authenticity issues. Links to press releases or more detailed articles on members' own websites are encouraged.

Posts on this page will not be moderated but if other members feel that a post is inapproriate they may, as for any other posts on the site, inform the site administration team.

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Food & Agri Weekly Update Friday 28 Oct

The new PM & new cabinet, what does it mean for food & Agri? ASA adjudications and making marketing communications clear enough. The new avian flu support package is launched today to support bird producers. New online food safety charter launched. Check your food safety as a €250m civil suit is launched in France and finally food fraud in supply chain, what to check for. 



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Through a joint effort, the two companies have developed a highly advanced chemical fingerprinting analysis method based stable isotope ratios. The first markets to be offered evidence-based transparency based on this new analysis tool will be the seafood market and the dietary supplement market, where the method already has been tested and validated. To verify if a salmon product is organic or not seems to be a popular application so far, based on feedback from pilot testing with commercial partners.
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The future is here! We at SG Isotech simply call it the MAGIC BOX


SparkleEIM is a totally autonomous universal instrument which can replace several very expensive peripherals and instruments for isotopic analysis. Now with SparkleEIM customers don't need HPLC, EA, Equilibration peripherals or NMR so that they could detect and authenticate wine, honey, strong spirits, fruit juices, fruit concentrates, beverage waters, etc... With SparkleEIM you can simply determine d13C values in solid and liquid samples, d18O values in wine, fruit juice and/or beverage waters, d18O value in ethanol, ethanol dDn value of non-exchangeable hydrogen in wine, fermented fruit juice, strong spirit, fermented honey ethanol and to detect very easily adulteration and additions of materials with different botanical origin. Further you can detect illegal addition of water to wine samples and much, much more... SparkleEIM coupled to your IRMS unit can give you all necessary analytical information for which until now you had to buy very expensive NMR, and full IRMS configuration containing HPLC peripheral, EA and equilibration technique for determination of d18O value in beverage water. Now SparkleEIM represents the ONE RING to bind them all in only ONE instrument and give you better performance!


EIM technology references:

EIM-IRMS has better repeatability standard deviation for Hydrogen than standard IRMS Hydrogen measurement. EIM-IRMS rSTDEV= max 1 promil. At the Directorate for National Reference Laboratories of Republic of Serbia we have obtained EIM-IRMS champion results for repeatability standard deviation of 0,2 promil!! This puts EIM-IRMS on the throne as the most accurate isotopic technique on planet Earth, even better than NMR!

EIM-IRMS interlaboratory testing:

EIM-IRMS brochure:

Russians confirmed that EIM-IRMS eats NMR for breakfast!

SparkleEIM with our OXYPrep sample preparation unit can give d18O values in wine and beverage water as good as equilibration technique coupled to IRMS:

EIM-IRMS honey authenticity testing: 

for more information and quotes you can contact us at or

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Combat food fraud: Meet Misa

Misa (Metrohm Instant SERS Analyser) is a new, portable instrument for rapid, presumptive testing of foodstuffs at the point of sampling. Smaller than a shoe box, this new solution can be taken anywhere and gives public authorities and retailers the possibility to check all kinds of foodstuffs for notorious adulterants, residues of banned, highly toxic pesticides and herbicides or even illegal growth hormones in a few seconds. It is operated by a simple App and can be used by anyone with only a minimum of sample preparation required. Several free Application Notes prove the validity of the Misa system.

Economically Motivated Adulteration (EMA) of food is a costly problem harming people all over the world. Notorious suspects are:
  • Industrial dyes used in brightly colored candies
  • Pesticides residues on fruits and vegetables
  • Illicit pharmaceuticals used to mimic traditional  herbal medicines
  • Illegal growth hormones in meat

Metrohm is pleased to present a range of free applications to detect artificial colourants, residues of pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides that are banned by many public authorities due to their suspected carcinogenic nature.

if you would like to know more see, the link below: 

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Purity-IQ is a Canadian biotechnology company based in Mississauga, Ontario. It is committed to innovation in research and development and in the commercialization of practical and affordable scientifically validated quality assurance standards and tools, designed to further support brand product claims related to identity, authenticity, and purity. Purity-IQ focuses on commodities and inputs for the food, drug, beverage, natural health products and cannabis industries.   
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According to the Botanical Adulterants Prevention Program (BAPP) new bulletin, extra virgin olive oil is still being listed among the most common food frauds worldwide. The distinctive sensory profile, and its reputation as a healthy source of dietary fats has made olive oil a premium product, which is why it’s become a target for fraudsters.

The problem even affects those varieties bearing the coveted Protected designation of origin (PDO) and Protected geographical indication (PGI) stamps indicating the precise geographical origin of a particular extra virgin olive oil to ensure the quality of that region’s agricultural products, and which are subjected to more strict controls.

That’s why a number of regulation and standards have been introduced which aim to reduce the amount of fraudulent olive oil on the market. This includes the EU’s Regulation (EU) 2568/91, standards of the International olive oil council (IOC) and CODEX alimentarius STAN 33–1981. However it’s a new initiative from The European Union Horizon 2020 which might help turn the tide in the producers and consumers’ favour.

Starting in September 2016, Project OLEUM aims to better guarantee olive oil quality and authenticity through improved methods for detecting and preventing olive oil fraud. Determining the authenticity of olive oil with traditional methods was problematic because its fatty acid composition overlaps with that of several other cheaper oils.

“Research will also focus on developing new instrumental analytical methods for identifying illegal blends of olive oils with other vegetable oils or lower quality products, for evaluating freshness and predicting best-before date, and for monitoring compliance with the labelled geographical origin and the EU health claim on polyphenols.”

One of the new methods for detection, is Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometry. This method is able to detect adulteration due to the differences in isotope ratio between different sources of olive oil. Isotope analysis of the H, C and O compositions of bulk oil or oil sub-components is used because the isotopic ratios of H, C and O change with the botanical origin and with the climatic and geographical characteristics of the location where the plant was grown.

Using the advanced technology of Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometry is a powerful way to identify and thus prevent extra virgin olive oil adulteration and criteria relating to this technique may be expected to appear in the appropriate Codex standards in the future.

LGC Proficiency Testing’s Food Chemistry (QFCS) scheme and now Forensic Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometry (FIRMS) scheme offer samples relating to olive oil authenticity and quality.

The new FIRMS 1 sample allows participants to test their ability to measure differences in isotope ratio between different sources of olive oil.

Click here to see the range of LGC Proficiency Testing Olive Oil Samples -


(Author: Dominic Keely, LGC)

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Hi to everybody,

I would like to draw the attention of other members of the Food Authenticity network to what we are working on in our SG Isotech company. SGI has developed, patented and validated a new fast and accurate isotopic method for determining the botanical origin of sugar or ethanol. Our new EIM-Module -IRMS technology (Ethanol Isotope Measurement - Module - Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometry) is able to detect illegal manufacturing practices in wine production (detection of added sugar and/or water dilution), to determine the authenticity of fruit juices in the case of freshly squeezed fruit juices that are declared without added sugar or water in comparison to reconstructed fruit juices which are produced from juice concentrate with water dilution, as well as the detection of the presence of diverse sugar syrups in honey.

In addition, our new EIM-Module - IRMS concept gives a better differentiation of measured analyte - ethanol in comparison to NMR and therefore it can be used in most cases without the need of reference isotopic databases for sample comparison. Among other things, for honey authenticity testing EIM-Module-IRMS is the only technique which can give information about quantitative addition of Beet sugar invert syrup to honey.

Now, this new EIM-Module-IRMS technology opens the possibility for laboratories which already use IRMS equipment to give information on wine, fruit juices and honey authenticity which were until now possible to achieve only by means of very expensive NMR testing.

For more information, please jump to our website or you can contact me directly at .

Cheers! :)

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SwissDeCode has launched the Rapid Intervention Service, a new service that is able to identify the source of a food safety outbreak in one shift. This service brings a team of experts to companies going through a food safety crisis. They do a fast, precise and relevant audit to find the source of contamination, being able to detect the target DNA even after standard cleaning. The first results are provided in one shift, allowing the company to reduce losses. After the source is found, SwissDeCode’s experts will continue to work with the company to improve their monitoring strategy, by combining the SwissDeCode’s DNAFoil technology with their processes. Timings, relevance and efficiency are improved to minimize the risk of another outbreak in the future.

Click here to read the Press Release

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SwissDeCode, in partnership with Agroscope, has developed a new solution that is able to verify the autheticity of cheese, through the detection of proof-of-origin bacterial cultures. Although it has been developed and tested on different Swiss cheeses, the solution, which provides results in just one hour, can be also adapted to other types of cheeses.

Complete article in English HERE.

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Fish oil supplements have grown in popularity in recent years due to their health benefits and it’s important that testing for fatty acids is consistently accurate to support percentage claims on labels and in product information.



According to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) “food supplements are concentrated sources of nutrients or other substances with a nutritional or physiological effect, whose purpose is to supplement the normal diet”. The number of substances other than vitamins and minerals used in food supplements in the European market is estimated to be over 400. Some of the most popular are fish oils, probiotics and herbal ingredients. 

Fish oil supplements have grown in popularity in recent years due to their health benefits, leading to rapid expansion in the number of fish oil supplements available and their popularity amongst consumers.
Several studies suggest that eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA-omega-3) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA-omega-3) are beneficial to cardiovascular health. These fatty acids can be found in oily fish like salmon and sardines but also in fish oil supplements typically composed of cod liver oil. It is particularly important that the label claims for EPA and DHA are accurate, since a specific dosage may be required.
Opperman et al. (2011) tested 45 commercially available omega-3 supplements sold in South Africa, and found that 56% and 51% of the supplements failed to meet the lowest range of 89% for EPA and DHA concentrations stated on the label.

CODEX Alimentarius has recently (2017) issued a Standard for Fish oils that applies to the fish oils that are presented in a state for human consumption. According to this standard, Cod liver oil is derived from the liver of wild cod, Gadus morhua L. and other species of Gadidae and the range of fatty acid composition (expressed as % of total fatty acids) should fall within the appropriate range stated in the standard.

With this LGC Proficiency Testing sample laboratories can also demonstrate their ability to directly measure the derivatisation and analysis of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in a 100% fat sample without the need to extract the fat from a complex matrix beforehand. 

The new Sample 806, in the LGC QFCS food chemistry proficiency testing (PT) scheme is designed to support your quality testing for fatty acid determination in fish oil supplements.

This sample is available in our food chemistry proficiency testing scheme for the first time in round FC266 to be despatched 16th June 2018

 Fish oil supplements

Opperman M, Marais DW and Spinnler Benade AJ, Analysis of omega-3 fatty acid content of South African fish oil supplements. Cardiovasc J Southern Afr 22:324–329 (2011).
European Commission, Food supplements,  (accessed 1/5/18).

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Honey essential composition and quality factors (in line with CODEX standard and EC Directive 2001/110)

QFCS Sample 801  can help establish or confirm the efficacy of this testing and ensure analytical methods are fit-for-purpose.

This sample is available in  food chemistry proficiency testing scheme in round FC264 to be despatched 16 April 2018.

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Product classification: Dairy Cheese or Analogue cheese?

Cheese authenticity and quality

By Savvas Xystouris, Technical/Development Manager, Proficiency Testing, LGC
19th September 2017

Consumers need to have access to safe and high quality food. Agri-food products of high commercial value such as dairy products, olive oil, honey, meat and fish have traditionally been the target of fraud. The prevention of fraud and promotion of authentic products is vital to ensure the commercial success of agricultural and food products on international markets and to protect consumer rights.

In line with these concerns, the European Union (EU) established a system to grant food products with quality logos. The logos are “Protected Designation of origin” (PDO), “Protected Geographical origin” (PGI) or “Traditional Speciality Guaranteed (TSG)”. 232 cheese products are currently registered on Database of Origin and Registration (DOOR) Commission system of which 188 are granted with the strictest PDO quality logo from all over the EU. Mozzarella di Bufala Campana is a fresh soft cheese produced in 7 provinces in Italy from Campania buffalo milk under specific PDO rules and requirements, which can only be sold if pre-packaged at place of origin.

During a UK Trading standards surveillance operation in 2016, 40 “mozzarella cheese” pizzas were purchased from takeaways across the UK. Five of them contained a “cheese” substitute known as “analogue cheese” instead of “100% mozzarella cheese” (as stated). Adulteration of cheese with a PDO grant damages the reputation of the product and erodes consumer confidence. 

Cheese “analogue” or imitation cheese is a non-dairy product of the food industry and was developed predominantly for vegan or vegetarian consumers as a “cost-effective” alternative.

However, although visibly similar, imitation cheese is not chemically indistinguishable from dairy cheese and testing can distinguish whether imitation cheese has been used.

Sample 800: Cheese authenticity and quality can help establish or confirm the efficacy of this testing and ensure analytical methods are fit-for-purpose.

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