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GMA & TSL to Deliver Food Safety Training to Caribbean

GMA & TSL to Deliver Food Safety Training to Caribbean

GMA & TSL to Deliver Food Safety Training to Caribbean

A memorandum of Understanding (MOU) has been signed between the Grocery Manufacturers Association Science and Education Foundation of the USA (GMA-SEF) and Jamaican food technology company Technological Solutions Limited (TSL) for the joint marketing and execution of Food Safety Training programmes (FST) to be delivered in the Caribbean. The MOU was signed on Monday May 1 at TSL’s Red Hills Road offices by Dr. Andre′ Gordon, TSL’s Managing Director and Dr. Akhila Vasan, GMA-SEF’s Scientific Programme Manager at GMA Science and Education Foundation.

The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) is the trade organization representing the world’s leading food, beverage and consumer products companies and associated partners. The U.S. food, beverage and consumer packaged goods industry plays a unique role as the single largest U.S. manufacturing employment sector, with 2.1 million jobs in 30,000 communities across the country that deliver products vital to the wellbeing of people around world. GMA has a primary focus on product safety, science-based public policies and industry initiatives that seek to empower people with the tools and information they need to make informed choices and lead healthier lives.

The GMA Science and Education Foundation (SEF) is a non-profit foundation that provides scientific and educational contributions to the food and consumer products industry. Through the foundation, the global food industry can leverage state-of-the-art technologies and processes with the technical expertise provided by GMA’s scientific staff to achieve timely results and solutions.

“The vision of the GMA Science and Education Foundation is to catalyze the improvement of global food safety inspiring the trust of the world’s consumers,” Dr Vasan said.” Our mission is to deliver innovative research, state-of-the art training and best-in-class education programmes to the food industry and consumers and, thereby, contribute to the delivery of high quality, safe food and consumer products.”

Technological Solutions Limited (TSL) offers a comprehensive range of technical services to support the productive sector in Jamaica and the Caribbean. The company provides guidance in trade-related technical requirements, and specializes in food safety, quality assurance, auditing, production systems design and implementation, and an extensive range of analytical services, including shelf life analysis and consumer/product complaint evaluation.

TSL also provides plant and facility layout and design, new product development, profit improvement, trouble-shooting and consulting services. Together with its expertise in the area of standards and standardization, these services enable Caribbean companies in the business of agriculture, agro-processing, food service, hospitality, exporting, manufacturing and distribution to access world-class technical services that are focused on their specific needs and circumstances.

Publication Promoting Caribbean Foods as Excellent Products Launched

Publication Promoting Caribbean Foods as Excellent Products Launched

Publication Promoting Caribbean Foods as Excellent Products Launched

Publication promoting Caribbean foods as Excellent Products of Exceptional Quality underpinned by Sound Science Launched by Dr. Andre Gordon

Thursday, April 20, 2017 was of particularly great importance to the Caribbean Food Industry, as Dr. Andre Gordon, Managing Director of Technological Solutions Limited launched his second book in a three-part series entitled, “Food Safety& Quality Systems in Developing Countries: Volume II: Case Studies of Effective Implementation”.   This publication highlights strategies implemented  by some firms to address critical food safety  issues, primarily through the use of case studies.

Speaking at the event, Guest Speaker, former Prime Minister P. J. Patterson, commended Dr. Gordon on the work he and TSL has been doing to build Jamaica and the region’s food industry to make our firms compliant with international standards and our products acceptable in major export markets such as the USA, the EU and Canada.  The former Prime Minister commented on the ground-breaking work Dr. Gordon has been doing in the industry and helping to establish Caribbean brands internationally as safe, high quality foods.

A synopsis of the publication was given by Chairman of the Standards Council of the Bureau of Standards  Jamaica Mr. James Rawle.  In his review, Mr. Rawle noted that the book, which draws on years of real-life interventions in a range of industries, was structured to present a platform through which Jamaican and Caribbean foods, including some of our iconic products could be promoted globally and presented as excellent products of exceptional quality, and whose production is backed by sound science.  He noted that the fundamental theme of the book is that Caribbean traditional foods, such as Jerk seasoning, canned ackees and our beverages, are fast becoming mainstream products in developed markets and are no longer confined to limited quantities in ethnic shops, but are increasingly found in large multiples.  He noted that the book was well structured, as complex concepts were fully explained complemented with some 300 references and several illustrations in the form of diagrams, charts and summary tables which provide clarity, thus making it easy to read and understand.

To purchase your copy of Food Safety& Quality Systems in Developing Countries: Volume II: Case Studies of Effective Implementation”  you may contact do so from this website or contact us at Technological Solutions Limited by telephone at – 632-3245 or 632-3217.

The book is also available for sale on line through publishers Elseviere from the following link:

http://www.elsevier.com/books/food-safety-and-quality-systems-in-developing-countries/gordon/978-0-12-801226-0

 or through Amazon at

https://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=food+science+and+technology+-+andre+gordon&rh=n%3A283155%2Ck%3Afood+science+and+technology+-+andre+gordon

TSL Client Gets Commendation

TSL Client Gets Commendation

TSL Client Gets Commendation

By Rochelle Williams, TSL

The Guyana Analyst-Food and Drug Division (GA-FDD) has been commended for their action and vigilance in protecting the Guyanese industry and consumers from food fraud. This is subsequent to training and support received from Technological Solutions Limited’s  Mr. James Kerr and Dr. André Gordon, advising the Executive Director and the GA-FDD team on best practices in handling labeling, food fraud and other attempts to deceive the consumer and compete unfairly with established businesses.

In a press release dated March 26 2017, it was reported that Guyanese distributor of Brunswick® Tuna, Beepats, supported the government’s efforts to block deceptive products. Beepats thanked the government for exercising vigilance and taking swift action in identifying and blocking food products thought to be false,  misleading and deceptively labelled, from entering the country.

The media report noted that a joint effort between GA-FDD and the Guyana Customs and Trade Administration (GTA) prohibited the distribution of bogus canned tuna from China, which had noncompliant labels that closely resembled the label for Brunswick®  Flaked Tuna in Oil. This appeared to be an attempt to mislead the consumers into thinking that the product was a legitimate Brunswick® product.

The government advised the public to “take a second look” on their labels to ensure that the country of origin and name and address of the manufacturer were present on the products being purchased.

TSL was contracted to undertake a comprehensive audit and training program for GA-FDD from September 21 to October 1, 2015.  The extensive workshop prepared and delivered to selected employees of GA-FDD included:

  • Introduction to HACCP and basic microbiology
  • Certification Systems in the Food Industry
  • Market requirements for products intended for certain markets
  • Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) and Pre-Requisite Programs (PRPs)
  • Product development, packaging and labelling requirements for Canada, United States of America and Europe/United Kingdom.

In addition to the list of topics above, analysts were trained in theory of several chemical and microbiological analyses. Two sets of analysts were also flown to Jamaica in early 2016 to be trained at TSL’s Testing Laboratory in selected analyses which will be performed routinely at GA-FDD.

With the knowledge garnered from the training, representatives of the government were able to spot the irregularities of the fraudulent product and advise the nation of its presence in the  market

Research On Bottled Coconut Water Sets Standard For Industry

Research On Bottled Coconut Water Sets Standard For Industry

Research On Bottled Coconut Water Sets Standard For Industry

Research on Coconut receives Citation from ResearchGate

Coconuts (Cocos nucifera L) have been around for centuries and are considered a super food. They are one of the few plants where just about every part of the plant is utilized. The leaves and trunks are used for furniture, the fibrous husk provides coir, charcoal is made from the hard shell, and throughout the various stages of maturation the “meat” or jelly is utilized for a variety of purposes ranging from food to cosmetics. Coconuts are commonly harvested for coconut water and other products, with coconut water being the most widely consumed coconut product. Today, it is a growing global industry worth over US$300 Million, and as such, the coconut industry is an important industrial sector in many developing countries.

In an in-depth analysis of coconut water Dr. Gordon, in collaboration with other scientists based internationally, conducted research on the Changes in the Chemical Composition of Coconut (Cocus nucifera) Water During Maturation of the Fruit.   The research examined the factors affecting the quality and shelf life of coconut water distributed by traditional refrigerated coconut water bottlers. It also examined the process from harvesting to bottling and documented the issues influencing the production of quality, safe coconut water in the Caribbean. The outcome was recommendations for changes in practices, the implementation of Good Manufacturing Practices and technical solutions that resulted in a reduction in spoilage and an increase of shelf life from 2–3 to 7–10 days for producers of traditional refrigerated bottled coconut water.

This research formed the basis of a guidance document published by the UN Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) that is being used globally by the Coconut Water Industry.

In late 2016, Dr. Gordon received commendation from ResearchGate, the number one networking site for scientists and published researchers for the fact that the article was cited over 50 times in international research literature.

In his most recent publication – Food Safety and Quality Systems in Developing Countries: Volume II: Case Studies of Effective Implementation, Dr. Gordon also dedicated a chapter to looking at the production of Coconut Water and the science behind it.