Food testing lab services provide comprehensive analytical testing and analysis of food products to ensure safety, quality, and compliance with regulatory standards. These labs employ a range of testing methods and equipment to assess various parameters, including microbiological, chemical, physical, and nutritional aspects of food. Here are some common food testing services offered by food testing labs:

  1. Microbiological Testing: This includes testing for microbial contaminants such as bacteria (e.g., Salmonella, E. coli), yeasts, molds, and other pathogens. It helps identify potential sources of contamination and ensures compliance with food safety regulations.
  2. Chemical Analysis: Labs perform chemical testing to determine the presence and levels of various substances in food, including pesticides, heavy metals, additives, preservatives, allergens, mycotoxins, and residues of veterinary drugs. These tests help ensure food safety and compliance with regulatory limits.
  3. Nutritional Analysis: Food testing labs assess the nutritional composition of food products, including macronutrients (such as carbohydrates, proteins, and fats), vitamins, minerals, dietary fibers, and other components. This information helps with labeling compliance and providing accurate nutritional information to consumers.
  4. Allergen Testing: Food testing labs can identify and quantify the presence of allergenic substances, such as peanuts, tree nuts, gluten, soy, milk, and shellfish, in food products. This is crucial for ensuring the safety of individuals with food allergies or intolerances.
  5. Shelf-Life Studies: Labs can conduct stability and shelf-life studies to evaluate the quality and durability of food products over time. This involves assessing factors such as sensory attributes, microbial growth, oxidation, and nutrient degradation.
  6. GMO Testing: Labs offer testing services to detect the presence of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in food products. This is important for compliance with labeling regulations and addressing consumer concerns.
  7. Authenticity and Adulteration Testing: Labs can test for food adulteration, substitution, and authenticity issues. This involves verifying the identity of ingredients, detecting fraudulent practices, and ensuring product integrity.
  8. Sensory Evaluation: Some labs provide sensory evaluation services to assess the organoleptic characteristics of food products, including taste, aroma, texture, and appearance. This information helps in product development, quality control, and consumer acceptance.

Smart Food Lab also offer customized testing services based on specific requirements, such as specialized testing for specific food categories (e.g., dairy products, meat, beverages) or targeted testing for specific contaminants or Glycemic index for Cereals.

When seeking food testing lab services, it is important to choose a reputable and accredited lab with experienced professionals and reliable testing methodologies.

Smart Food Lab has NABL Accreditation ( as per ISO/IEC 17025: 2017) ensures adherence to quality standards. Additionally, consider factors such as turnaround time, sample handling procedures, and confidentiality of results.

Shelf-life studies

Direct method
These are real-time studies that consist of storing the product under conditions similar to those that it will actually face, to monitor its evolution in regular intervals of time. The main advantage of this method is that it creates a very accurate estimation of the time it takes for a product to deteriorate; however, they are studies that usually take a long time and do not consider the fact that storage conditions of a product are not always stable over time.
Challenge Test
This method consists of experimentally introducing pathogens or microorganisms into the food during the production process, so that the product is exposed to the real conditions it will suffer in real life. The main disadvantage of this type of test is that the effects caused by the studied parameters are the only things analysed, and the fact that the product can be faced with multiple factors at the same time is not addressed. In addition, they are studies that are quite complex and difficult to implement.

Predictive Microbiology

This methodology studies the different microbial responses of foods to varying environmental conditions, based on mathematical and statistical models, in order to predict the behaviour of the microorganisms in the product. This type of study, widely used when developing a new product, does consider the possible changing conditions of a product, however, its major limitation is that it implies greater complexity for the manufacturer and that the results correspond to a simulation, which may not be accurate

Accelerate shelf life tests

In these tests, conditions such as temperature, oxygen pressure or moisture content are modified to accelerate spoilage reactions of a food. These predictions allow one to predict the behaviour of foods in certain conditions and to estimate how they will evolve under certain storage conditions. Accelerated tests allow the inclusion of changing environmental conditions and concentration variations of the ingredients that they are composed of. These studies are very versatile, low cost for the manufacturer and allow for the comparison of different scenarios. Obviously, since it is not an exact representation of reality, there is some margin of error in the obtained results.

Survival method

It is a type of study that is based on the opinion of the consumer about the physical characteristics of the product. It consists in knowing the attitude of people towards the same product with different dates of manufacture, to determine if they would consume it or not. This method seeks to establish a relationship between the shelf life and the perceived quality of the product. Although it is not a method to accurately estimate the shelf life, it is important to do it in a complementary way to establish the best by date of a product.

The interest in preserving food goes very far back in time. Salting, pickling or drying in the sun and air were the first attempts to extend the shelf life of food. Today, thanks to food industrialisation, companies have the responsibility to determine the shelf life of their products and to provide good quality food.