News & Media :: Daily Log
Innovation in Action
Apr 27, 2010
Food fraud is a serious problem worldwide, as evidenced by the systematic adulteration of milk in China with the chemical melamine. A Michigan State University study recently concluded that 5% to 7% of the U.S. food supply is impacted by food fraud involving substitution of lower cost ingredients.
For example, cow's milk is sometimes used in lowering the cost of making cheese from goat or sheep milk.
A new test system called MOVS -- Milk Origin Verification Solutions -- has been developed by a company called Picarro. The system works by analyzing stable isotope signatures from milk produced in different regions, and has been calibrated to work in major U.S. dairy production regions.
This system is an example of advanced analytical systems under development around the world for applications in monitoring the veracity of food label claims. The organic industry in Europe is working on the development of several similar systems to verify organic labels on certain food products.