On Thursday, April 26th, the American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI) announced its collaboration with Mérieux NutriSciences in order to help get a better understanding and direct the frozen food industry’s sampling and testing programs. The partnership will allow AFFI to see blinded, aggregated Listeria monocytogenes sampling results, at a high-level, in order to make assumptions and projections on trends affecting the frozen food industry now and in the future.

This partnership represents AFFI’s commitment to advancing food safety,” says AFFI president and CEO Alison Bodor. “Understanding and promoting the best sampling and testing for Lm will foster better education and training resources for our members.”

As part of the collaboration, Mérieux NutriSciences will offer both testing and data aggregation to participating AFFI members, allowing them to see how their specific plant or facility is trending compared to the rest of the frozen food industry. While all identifying data is blinded, the information will be able to show a frozen food category, such as “frozen desserts,” and sub-categories, like “ice cream.”

“We are excited to partner with AFFI on their latest food safety program,” says Jim Miller, Mérieux NutriSciences president, North America. “They are doing great things for their members and have a solid plan in place to get the frozen food industry recognized as leaders in food safety and quality. As partners with similar missions, we are happy to be able to support them in whatever capacity.”

The AFFI-Mérieux NutriSciences Collaboration is expected to quickly gain momentum. The initiative will be launched officially at AFFI’s 2018 Spring Leadership Conference in May. “We hope to have a good amount of our members excited and signed up by early summer,” says Bodor. “We know it will take some time for this program to get implemented and we are just excited to get moving!”