No Secrets. Just Quality Products.
In the manufacturing of LiquaCel™ Concentrated Liquid Protein, there are numerous systems in place to ensure each bottle and packet is manufactured in compliance with Food Safety Guidelines. This is achieved by adhering to the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) Code of Federal Regulations (CFR’s) Title 21 which deems these products a medical food, and being in compliance to all New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets GMP Regulations.
LiquaCel™ is manufactured under a HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) based system that meets the Global Food & Safety Initiative (GFSI) standards. A food safety management scheme is ‘recognized’ by GFSI when it meets internationally recognized minimum food safety requirements. The Global Food Safety Initiative is a business driven initiative for the continuous improvement of food safety management systems to ensure confidence in the delivery of safe food to consumers worldwide. GFSI provides a platform for collaboration between some of the world’s leading food safety experts from retailers, manufacturers, food service companies, service providers associated with the food supply chain, international organizations, academia and government.
The manufacturers of LiquaCel™ are currently certified to the GFSI Standards, through their SQF (Safety Quality Foods) certification to SQF 2000 level 3 and are re-certified annually to maintain accreditation. During the manufacturing process, there are many steps to establishing the food safety of the products for the consumer. One of these is ensuring the formulation by means of continual testing of water activity.
What is Water Activity?
Water in food which is not bound to food molecules can support the growth of bacteria, yeasts and molds (fungi). The term water activity refers to this unbound water. The water activity of a food is not the same thing as its moisture content. Although moist foods are likely to have a great water activity then dry foods, this is not always so; in fact a variety of foods may have exactly the same moisture content and yet have quite different water activities.
Measuring Water Activity
The water activity scale extends from 0 (bone dry) to 1.0 (pure water) but most foods have a water activity level in the range of 0.2 for very dry foods to 0.99 for moist fresh foods. Water activity is in practice usually measured as equilibrium relative humidity (ERH). The water activity represents the ratio of the water vapor pressure of the food to the water vapor pressure of pure water under the same conditions and it is expressed as a fraction. If we multiply this ratio by 100, we obtain the equilibrium relative humidity (ERH) that the foodstuff would produce if enclosed with air in a sealed container at constant temperature. Thus a food with a water activity of 0.7 would produce an ERH of 70%.
Improving Shelf Life
Water activity has its most useful application in predicting the growth of bacteria, yeasts and molds. For a food to have a useful shelf life without relying on refrigerated storage, it is necessary to control either its acidity level (pH) or the level of water activity or a suitable combination of the two. This can effectively increase the product’s stability and make it possible to predict its shelf life under known ambient storage conditions. Food can be made safe to store by lowering the water activity to a point, <0.85, that will not allow dangerous pathogens such as Clostridium botulinum and Staphylococcus aureus to grow in it.