Services

COMMITMENT TO SERVICE.

TESTING SERVICES

Chestnut Labs offers a wide variety of microbiological and proximate analytical chemistry testing services. Accurate and reliable test results are generated by our dedicated staff of experienced professionals. Our laboratory uses consistent and disciplined processes in our lab, to provide you a value added business partner.

These processes allow us to provide reliable results to you in a timely manner that will enable you to continue manufacturing and distributing your food products. Testing services include:

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MAKE DATA DRIVEN DECISIONS

Research

In the constantly evolving disciplines of food safety and quality, Chestnut Labs understands the critical need for companies to protect their brands.

Research studies provide data required to assess product or process safety, assure customer loyalty, guarantee a positive product experience, and comply with FSMA regulations or other special certifications. Chestnut Labs is your go-to collaborative partner providing value added services, uncompromising quality and a commitment to excellence.

From shelf-life studies to in-plant validations, our consultants will work with you to deliver quality data and provide a detailed interpretation of the results.

Let Chestnut Labs work with you to design and implement the study you require. We have experience with a wide range of food and animal food products including dairy, fermented and acidified foods, baked goods, dry ingredients, and probiotics.  Our processing knowledge includes thermal processing, continuous microwave processing, high pressure processing, fermentation, acidification, and multiple hurdle technologies.

RESEARCH AREAS INCLUDE:

Antimicrobial Effectiveness Testing

Antimicrobial effectiveness testing follows United States Pharmacopeia (USP) guidelines to measure the ability of products to inhibit specific microbes. These studies utilize inoculations of microorganisms of interest.  A known quantity is inoculated in the test product and compared to a negative control over a predetermined time period.  The antimicrobial properties of the test product or the effectiveness of an intervention is then quantified by reduction of counts over time.

Challenge Study

Challenge studies show how formulation, processing, and packaging affect microorganism survival on your product. These studies are designed using National Advisory Committee on Microbiological Criteria for Foods (NACMF) guidelines. Like antimicrobial effectiveness testing, these trials begin with inoculation of a known quantity of a microorganism of interest, and microbial counts are evaluated over time.

In-Plant Validations

In-plant validations can be performed at your production facility using non-pathogenic surrogate organisms. Our services include shipping of necessary supplies and providing an experienced microbiologist/Preventive Controls Qualified Individual (PCQI) to manage the on-site trials. Our experts are available evenings and weekends to minimize manufacturing down-time needed to run your study.

Laboratory and Pilot Scale Validations

These studies provide preliminary data prior to scale-up in the process facility. Critical control points (CCP) need to be verified as effective for Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) preventive controls.  Inactivation or reduction of microorganisms through time/temperature regimes, proper hold times, refrigeration, chemical interventions, or multiple hurdles will be conducted and evaluated by a Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance certified PCQI.

Media Certification

This test determines whether a growth media, substance, or other preparation complies with established specifications for microbiology resuscitation, growth, and enumeration. 

Special Projects

Let Chestnut Labs do the bench work for you. Our skilled research microbiologists are experienced in both culture and molecular methods. Let our steady hands perform your special projects, from proprietary methods and innovations to third-party confirmation of in-house procedures.

Shelf-Life Study

Confirming the optimal shelf-life of your product can enhance your bottom line, establish consistency and conformity, reduce waste, ensure product quality, guarantee positive customer experience, and protect your brand.  Our shelf-life studies are specifically designed for each client because we recognize that scope and special needs vary. Optimal shelf-life is determined by microbial, chemical, and sensory analysis to discover the limiting parameter causing unacceptable quality or safety.  An in-depth initial discussion with the client is used to define the target objectives.  Then, a detailed proposal is submitted for client to review prior to study initiation.  Shelf-life studies for shelf-stable products generally run in real-time from one to three years.

Time Kill Study- In Vitro

A Time Kill Test study is a basic microbiology method for assessment of antimicrobial activity of an antimicrobial test material or disinfectant. The time kill study is used to determine the microbial reduction of a selected bacteria or fungi. Depending on the type of analysis, and the matrix of the product various organisms are studied.

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TRAINING & EDUCATION

One of the best investments you can make to protect to your brand lies in effective employee training and education.

Ensure the quality and safety of your food products by allowing Chestnut Labs to design a training program to meet your needs.

Based on our food microbiology and chemistry expertise we can provide managers and supervisors with information on today’s most critical food safety issues.

Our instructors are experts who use real-life examples to provide you and your staff with the theoretical and practical information needed to produce safer, higher quality products.

We can help you meet your training, scheduling, and budget needs with cost-effective customized programs offered in a single or multi-day format. These services are available in the convenience of your facility or at Chestnut Labs headquarters. 

ENVIRONMENTAL MONITORING

Chestnut Labs can assist in developing an pathogen environmental monitoring program. Control of pathogenic microorganisms in the manufacturing environment is a key component to the overall Food Safety Program.

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ENVIRONMENTAL SAMPLING

Sampling practices can considerably affect the accuracy, consistency, and the value of data. As companies continue to rely on routine environmental monitoring programs to obtain important microbiological data; the importance of proper sampling techniques increase.

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Risk Assessment

Chestnut Labs can guide you through our program that is designed to identify, rank, and prioritize your products systems hazard vulnerability through on-site evaluations.

SAMPLING PLANS

An effective sampling program can help assure a food company’s controls are successful in maintaining the safety of final products, incoming ingredients, imported products, and products where the conditions of manufacture and storage are not known.

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AVAILABLE COURSES

Learn more about the courses available from Chestnut Labs, including class agendas, instructor bio’s, and registration information.

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TESTING METHODS

Chestnut Labs teaches beginning lab technicians the basics of lab safety, how to properly use laboratory tools, testing equipment, and appropriate procedures for conducting microbiological tests.

Contact Chestnut Labs to find out how our professionals can help you by designing a training program to improve the knowledge of your staff.

SOLUTIONS FOR YOUR SUPPLY CHAIN.

AUDITS

Chestnut Labs offers our clients food safety solutions from established experience. As a leader in food safety, Chestnut Labs is dedicated to providing the highest level of technical knowledge to ensure complete and well-documented audits. During audits, we deliver an impartial and independent assessment of your safety programs. To support your supply chain initiatives, we can partner with your corporate food safety and quality team to design a program that reflects your specifications and expectations.

FOOD SAFETY AUDIT

Knowing where your in-plant deficiencies lie is the first step in improving and enhancing your food safety and quality programs. Developed specifically for processors, our Food Safety Audit provides you with data to improve your food safety and quality systems

CO-MANUFACTURES AUDIT

It is critical to know that the co-manufacturers that are manufacturing product under your label are following GMP’s and food safety practices. This audit will evaluate their quality and food safety systems and provide detailed corrective actions.

LABORATORY PRACTICES AUDIT

In a GLP audit, Chestnut Labs will evaluate your labs conformance to recognized industry practices, and your own internal standard operating procedures. From aseptic sample handling techniques to data management, auditors review every aspect of your quality systems for deficiencies that can lead to the production of uncertain results, and the release of unsafe products to customers.

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