Fibre optic sensors to monitor microbes in food

Photo of different cheese include cheddar, a soft cheese and a blue cheese

To maintain the safety of foods, producers continually monitor products and the production environment to eradicate risks from pathogens contaminating foods. Many of these detection methods currently take days or even weeks, when what is needed are approaches that flag problems in hours or even minutes.

Dr Edward Fox from Northumbria University is partnering with Prima Cheese Ltd, on this project to deploy a rapid, antibody-based biosensor that’s been validated in the laboratory for sensitivity against key pathogens as part of an environmental monitoring programme. This will give producers a new tool for a more proactive approach to underpin food safety.