It means the firm has AOAC certifications for food safety kits designed to detect Salmonella, E.coli O157, Listeria species and Listeria monocytogenes.
Food matrixes approved include ground beef, beef trim, chicken, lettuce and apple juice for the E.coli assay.
The approval for the E.coli O157 (including H7) system includes AOAC Performance Tested Methods
Broader market options
Steven Guterman, chief executive officer, told FoodQualityNews.com that it will allow them to compete across a broader marketplace to support food firms and labs that need the full testing array.
“In the market the major pathogens are Salmonella, Listeria and E.coli and the quality control groups want to test for all three. It opens up customers to us who liked the idea and the equipment but knew we didn’t have AOAC approval for all three.”
Guterman said culture methods were a gold standard but they take four-five days, immuno-assay can be susceptible to high levels of false positives giving an example of Salmonella in seafood.
“PCR is the gold standard for a rapid method, molecular devices are easy to use and less expensive,” he said.
“We are aiming at the mid-market for 10-20 tests a day, we are not focusing on high throughput and we know that not everyone has a PhD in microbiology.
“Technology is always changing but PCR will be here for a while with its simplicity and there is other technology out there but some of it is expensive and others need to prove itself in the diagnostic field first.”
Past AOAC backing
AOAC approved InstantLabs food safety kits for Salmonella, Listeria species and Listeria monocytogenes last year and in 2012.
The Hunter Real-Time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) system has six test wells and one to three hour run time depending on the assay.
The Hunter system’s E.coli food safety kit provides final results from enriched sample to findings in less than two hours, with enrichment times in 10 hours.
InstantLabs' Salmonella and E.coli test kits are designed to produce accurate results using a common enrichment.
This eliminates the need to prepare two independent enrichments, reducing waste, saving time and money for companies that need quick and accurate test results, said the firm.
InstantLabs also offers porcine and equine species identification tests, allowing food companies to insure the purity of their products.
“We are looking at a couple of other assays such as Staphylococcus aureus and vibrio which are in beta development and another group of species identification test kits to broaden what we already have,” Guterman added.