Food Consulting Services
Food Consulting Services is an independent, professional hygiene, microbiology and food testing laboratory established in 1977. The FCS Hygiene Audit or Technical Survey is designed to evaluate the hygiene, sanitation, food safety and facilities in kitchens in the food service industry.
Our microbiology lab boasts 32 SANAS accredited methods in accordance with ISO/IEC 17025:2005 and employs the services of qualified scientists and technicians. We conduct a full range of Microbiological analyses on raw foodstuffs, cosmetics, ingredients, processed foods and food service products, for both human and animal consumption. We constantly strive to extend our scope of testing to fulfil the needs of our clients and introduce methods and high-tech instruments to reduce the turnaround times of results. FCS makes use of the VIDAS® immunoassay system, which offers rapid and accurate detection of food pathogens.
A microbiological evaluation of surface swabs, hand swabs, food samples and water samples forms part of the audit, and provides scientific evidence as to the food safety, hygiene and sanitation standards in the kitchen. The FCS Hygiene Audit ensures that a statistically representative number of microbiological samples are evaluated to be able to provide a meaningful microbiological index for the surface swabs, hand swabs, food samples and a composite microbiological index.
The microbiological indices are presented on a graph and tracked over the previous three audits to provide a trend over time.
Risk Based Reporting
The actual Hygiene Audit standards are based on SANS 10049 and R638 standards, as well as FCS’s 30+ years of experience conducting hygiene audits. The FCS Hygiene Audit is a risk based audit, and is designed to evaluate the risks in the kitchen in the following areas:
- Visual Cleanliness
- Cleaning Procedures
- Food Safety Practices
- Documentation related to Food Safety and Hygiene
- Facilities and maintenance
The above areas each receive an index which is represented as a percentage and presented on a graph and tracked over the previous three audits to provide a trend over time.
Separate Facilities and Maintenance Report
The FCS Hygiene Audit is one of the few audits which provide a completely separate facilities report, which evaluates the actual kitchen facilities and maintenance, and the impact thereof on the food safety risk.
We have a fully equipped chemistry laboratory able to handle a wide variety of basic food and cosmetic tests. We are in the process of preparing this laboratory for Accreditation.
Sensory evaluation is an invaluable tool to Quality Control as well as Research and Development. Customers perceive product quality with their senses, and as a result, organoleptic evaluations are an essential component of any Quality Control evaluations.
All of the technical, chemical and microbiological parameters of a product may well be within specification, but if the product fails to meet sensory expectations, or performs poorly against a competitor, product sales and brand image may well suffer. Organoleptic evaluations can also be used to develop sensory profiles when developing new products.
Food Consulting services has a panel of graduate food technologists to help with all your sensory needs.
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