3M Food Safety updates clean-trace Luminometer

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3M Food Safety has responded to the needs of the food safety industry with its latest luminometer, now available in Australia and New Zealand and offering greater sensitivity, more powerful and intuitive software, wireless connectivity and a rugged, user-friendly ergonomic industrial design.

Advances with the company’s latest Clean-Trace Hygiene Monitoring and Management System include the use of photomultiplier technology to amplify any luminescence and boost the likelihood of detection.

This is an important element in the luminometer’s re-engineering, and applies techniques used in cutting-edge medical devices, medical imaging and aerospace engineering.

The second area of improvement is the system’s upgraded software. The Clean-Trace Hygiene Management Software has a new user interface, with a streamlined and more intuitive dashboard to make navigation easier, minimize the amount of clicking between displays and allow reports to be generated more quickly.

Thirdly, the new-generation luminometer offers users wireless connectivity, with the capability of transferring data via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth technology to the device or computer where it will be analysed by the system software.

Finally, the housing and structure of the 3M Clean-Trace luminometer has been redesigned to be tougher and more ergonomic in use.

The improved system is being made available at a time where public health authorities worldwide are starting to take a much firmer, more consistent line when it comes to food safety and how it is monitored.

“Certainly, there is a heightened public sensitivity for food quality, resulting in more internal and external controls and reporting, and there’s been an abundance of new regulations,” said Tom Dewey, 3M Food Safety global marketing manager.

In New Zealand, for example, March 2016 was the deadline for compliance with the Food Act 2014 which, among other provisions, requires food businesses of all sizes to have a food control plan. For higher-risk food categories, the plan needs to be customised and to show evidence of how hazards are controlled through the manufacturing process.

In many ways, the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) 2011 Food Safety Modernisation Act set the international trend for regulation to help prevent food contamination rather than simply respond to it.

The ATP hygiene monitoring system can be used to provide evidence that relevant controls have been implemented and continual monitoring is taking place to meet these new legislated requirements.

As Tom Dewey explained, 3M consulted closely with customers in order to develop a system which was effective in automating and streamlining often time-consuming testing procedures, while sacrificing nothing in terms of precision or consistency.

Based on years of hard-edged research, as well as valuable feedback from those in food safety and hygiene management, the improved luminometer provides a rapid and dependable alternative to more time-consuming microbial testing methods.

With many manufacturers expanding the range and variety of their products, more changeovers are required. Despite this, downtime still needs to be kept to an absolute minimum, meaning that potentially high-risk decisions about food safety and cleanliness need to be taken quickly. Hence the need for technology offering the requisite speed and reliability of results.

While many of the features on the latest 3M Clean-Trace luminometer have been improved, its reputation for consistent accuracy was already established with the previous-generation model. When tested by a third-party lab, the precision and consistency of results across time and temperature, and between swabs, outperformed several major competing brands.

The 3M Clean Trace luminometer is one of many innovative solutions from 3M Food Safety for managers requiring efficient and reliable answers to the challenges generated by today’s fast-moving food and beverage industry.