As pressure to reduce food waste increases, food & beverage producers are finding it increasingly difficult to ensure high standards of hygiene. A major factor is the lack of fast, simple and affordable techniques for training staff and verifying hygiene. In many facilities where hundreds of products are processed every minute, even when contaminants are caught early, a significant product recall may still be required.
Many sources of contamination are invisible to the naked eye, and there’s always a chance something can slip through regardless of how comprehensive the cleaning is. Expensive equipment and staff training is often required to carry out proper hygiene tests. Reducing the costs and improving the ease with which hygiene verification tests are performed presents a huge benefit to both large and small food and beverage producers, and to multiple organisations (e.g. hospitals) where hygiene is of utmost concern.
A start-up has developed a spray solution that starts purple and changes colour to warn users of the presence of dangerous levels of bacterial, chemical or organic contaminants. The company is looking for collaborative opportunities (technical or research) to develop and incorporate their solution into new and novel applications.
Upon contact with the contaminated surfaces or contaminants, the solution will turn from purple to other colours along a spectrum within seconds.
The technology utilises biology unique to bacteria, and chemistries typically found in cleaning products and is:
Potential applications of this technology may include and is not limited to:
The size of the surface hygiene testing market is predicted to be a $17 billion global industry encompassing all sectors. Most products in this sector are also biologically based, meaning they use proteins to afford detection. This means they have a short shelf life and need to be stored in the fridge. This severely limits the climates that the current products can operate in. The proposed technology is chemical based which means it is stable at ambient temperatures. Making it far easier to use and store in any size business.
Currently there is also a drive to ensure that all businesses are operating to even higher levels of safety, this is due to recent outbreaks of food contamination. The need to use such technology has never been more apparent.
The technology has several benefits: