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Food and Feed Safety Symposium at Technopol Tulln

by 5m Editor
23 December 2008, at 6:32a.m.

AUSTRIA - Eighty scientists and experts participated in the first Food and Feed Safety Forum. A special highlight was the opening of the new laboratories at the Biomin Research Center.

A symposium with focus on Food and Feed Safety took place at the Technopol Tulln (Austria) on 16 December, with approximately 80 scientists and experts from industry and governmental agencies participated in this event, which also hosted the official opening of the additional laboratory facilities at the Austrian Biomin Research Center.

The aim of the symposium was to emphasize the importance and relevance of food and feed safety from the perspective of the Erber Group, as well as to give some insight into consequential research & development strategies and concepts of its three subsidiaries Biomin, Romer Labs and Bio-ferm. All three companies support R&D facilities at the Technopol Tulln. Products developed, produced and distributed by companies of the Erber Group are geared to support safety in the whole food chain, same as the 'farm to fork' concept of the European Union.

Romer Labs and its spin-off companies Quantas and Biopure focus on the analysis of undesirable contaminants in food and feeds, like fungal toxins or allergens. They offer specific products for determination of such contaminants, like rapid tests that are used for quick and efficient analysis on the field or highly specific chromatographic tests that serve as reference methods. Bio-ferm offers biological plant protectants while Biomin's core competence is in feed additives, which support animal health the natural way or counteract undesired feed contaminants, like mycotoxins or pathogenic microbes.

Lectures by Biomin's R&D scientists focused on new approaches to detoxify fungal toxins, the development of test models for the investigation of the gastrointestinal flora, and the development of safe probiotics.

Bio-ferm presented their approach on biological plant protection: so called biological control agents prevent harmful microbes from proliferating on the plant's surface. Bio-ferm received earlier this year the Lower Austrian Innovation Award for this product development.

Particularly well received was the presentation on the most recent food scandal in China, where baby and infant milk concentrates were contaminated with melamine, a toxic substance that caused the death of at least four babies and left more then 60,000 ill. As a quick response to the market demand that emerged out of this crisis, Romer adapted and optimized its existing test kit and completed the melamine testing product portfolio with isotope-labelled standards and reference analysis.