Cereals are generally of the gramineous family and include cereals harvested for dry grain only, as referred by the Food and Agricultural Organization. One of the latest forecasts sees world cereal production standing at 2,600 million tons, which has been steadily growing over the last 10 years.
Cereals play an important role in today’s food for human consumption as well as animal feed and pet food. The cereal industry supplies countless food manufacturers with cereals, grains or primary processed products, such as flour.
The main challenge that the cereal industry faces is to constantly ensure the quality and safety of cereal grains throughout the supply chain while complying with regulations and remaining profitable. Due to the danger posed by contaminants in cereals, there are strict regulatory limits worldwide. To help with these safety requirements, Neogen® offers a comprehensive range of test kits adapted for the cereal industry from mycotoxins testing through allergen testing and more.
Since the banning of the use of ruminant by-products in Meat and Bone Meal (MBM) in 1988, it is of utmost importance that the raw materials carrying a contamination risk (cross-contamination or otherwise) have undergone systematic verifications. In order to respond to these challenges in animal feed or pet food, Neogen has testing kits to support your needs.
Cross contamination in the cereal industry is a prevalent issue faced by manufacturers. This may occur when different cereal grains are mixed on production lines, in turn causing safety concerns. Neogen offers a large range of test kits and services for allergens including gluten and nuts, which are currently the main allergens of interest to the cereal industry.
The demand for “free-from” cereal products has increased due to enhanced diet restrictions, including the emergence of gluten-free and nut-free cereals. Supported with numerous validations on cereal based products and commodities, Neogen’s qualitative and quantitative tests kits can support your allergen testing requirements.
Clean, sanitized surfaces are at the base of every food safety program. Neogen’s AccuPoint® Advanced system measures adenosine tri-phosphate (ATP) to determine the amount of organic residue remaining after cleaning. The system is approved by the AOAC Research Institute and provides accurate ATP testing for cereal manufacturers and is an instant determination of cleaning efficacy to monitor adherence to a facility’s S.S.O.P.
Neogen’s Acumedia® brand offers a broad range of enrichment media for general microbial to pathogen-specific organisms. More than 240 catalogue formulations are available along with over 200 custom formulations to meet specific customer requirements. ISO 9001 certification, quality ingredients, consistent products, competitive pricing and on-time delivery make Acumedia enrichment media the right choice.
The main issues with microbial contamination of cereals are heavily linked to the environment in which the cereals are handled or stored, and subjected to risk factors such as human or animal faecal contamination, or chemicals, such as fertilisers. If no controls are in place, the contaminated raw material can potentially find its way in the finished product, especially if the cereals are not being processed. Neogen can support your microbiology testing with microbiology methods to suit any needs.
Mycotoxins are secondary metabolites produced by fungus and are also known as moulds. These are the most common food safety concern for the cereal industry due to their harmful and toxic nature when ingested by humans and animals. Mycotoxins can be produced wherever fungi growth conditions exist, for example, in pre-harvest grains in the field and in post-harvest grains in storage.
These toxins include aflatoxin, deoxynivalenol, fumonisin, ochratoxin, T-2 / HT-2 toxins and zearalenone, all of which are subject to strict level limits from world bodies in cereal grains including wheat and corn.
Regular testing through Neogen’s quantitative methods can help to ensure raw materials and processed cereals do not contain mycotoxins above the maximum levels. These tests can be used on-site or in a laboratory to support your testing needs.