Our phones write our e-mails, our cars have Wi-Fi, and our refrigerators manage the grocery list. As technology evolves in the 21st century, multi-functional features have become essential in consumer products. So how are suppliers to the food safety industry meeting this trend to make the lives of food safety and quality managers more convenient? With increased requirements demanded by the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and heightened federal reaction to lapses in food safety management (e.g., Peanut Corporation of America sentencing, recent Chipotle subpoenas, etc.), the modern food safety manager and his or her quality team are stretched thinner than ever. Hygiena is a leading supplier addressing the needs of busy food safety professionals with the multi-functional EnSURE™ monitoring system, a one-stop shop of sanitation monitoring tools.

Identifying the Need
Quickly moving supply chains and operational demands for increased efficiency require minimal production downtimes in the modern food plant. In addition, manufacturers are motivated to release products as early as possible for extended shelf life and maximum quality at point of purchase. When unexpected out-of-specification results come back from the lab several days later, it is often after production has continued on compromised equipment. This inefficiency in time-to-results has become a fact of life for modern food safety managers, and is finally being challenged by ultra-rapid environmental and product test kits. ATP sanitation monitoring systems have heretofore provided a surrogate measurement of plant sanitation, but sanitation cannot be strictly measured by ATP, a philosophy echoed by FSMA’s emphasis on environmental monitoring. A typical food plant may be running several to hundreds of daily tests for ATP, allergenic proteins and microorganisms. While ATP and allergen results are relatively instant, the several-days’ wait for micro results holds food processors back from increasing lab efficiencies and gaining better control over sanitation. A paradigm shift is finally happening with the growing acceptance of rapid and convenient point-of-use methods.

Providing a Solution
Hygiena’s EnSURE monitoring system is a food safety lab platform in the palm of your hand.  The system measures a multitude of food safety and quality indicators in a range of disposable pen-sized swab tests. Designed for ease of use with affordability in mind, Hygiena’s MicroSnap™ line breaks the mold on time-to-results by delivering sensitive microorganism test results in 10% of the time of traditional 72-hour lab tests. Furthermore, Hygiena is independently validated as the leading manufacturer of hygiene-monitoring test kits by one of the world’s most reputable food testing labs. AOAC-RI validation studies have demonstrated Hygiena’s MicroSnap test kits offer great improvement in accuracy over ISO methods for determination of bacteria–and in a fraction of the time at a significantly lower cost.

The Swiss Army Knife of Sanitation Monitoring: Compatible Tests
The EnSURE monitoring system measures a wide range of sanitation, microbiology and quality indicator tests, all on one piece of equipment. Current EnSURE-compatible test kits include:

•    Surface ATP sanitation monitoring

•    High-sensitivity surface ATP sanitation monitoring & allergen prevention

•    Total & free water ATP

•    Product & surface microbiology test kits for various indicator organisms

•    Acid phosphatase

•    Alkaline phosphatase

Products in development include rapid environmental all-in-one swab tests designed for ease of use and affordability. Contact Hygiena for premarket trials of MicroSnap Surface Express.

EnSURE At-Large
A recent case study demonstrates the time and cost-saving advantages available from the EnSURE monitoring system and its compatible ATP and microorganisms tests. In the study, surface swab samples were collected after cleaning with both MicroSnap Total (7-hour total bacteria) and UltraSnap (15-second surface ATP). Samples were collected from nine different points on manufacturing equipment over several days while several different product types were being manufactured.

Using the EnSURE monitoring system with both MicroSnap Total and UltraSnap measures two key components of hygiene in the shortest time possible, enabling greater quality assurance and improved process control. MicroSnap makes on-site bacteria testing easy, saving time and money. This case study showed that the implementation of MicroSnap streamlined microbial testing, making it easier, more flexible and more efficient by reducing time-to-results by more than 80 hours and simultaneously reducing cost per test by approximately 40%.

Getting Started
To get started with the EnSURE monitoring system, Hygiena offers a free trial period. In addition, Hygiena offers a unique trade-up program that enables users of other hygiene-monitoring systems to trade up to the world’s best-selling brand. To learn more, visit hygiena.com/foodsafety or call 1-888-HYGIENA.