The US Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA FSIS) has awarded a contract to 3M Food Safety for the provision of pathogen detection instruments and kits.

The deal will see the USDA FSIS leverage 3M’s molecular detection system as a primary method of identifying three major pathogenic organisms, namely Salmonella, Listeria monocytogenes and E. coli O157 (including H7), which are considered a considerable threat to the safety of meat, poultry and egg-related products.

3M’s detection solution incorporates a combination isothermal DNA amplification and bioluminescence detection technologies.

"The USDA FSIS’ selection of 3M as a partner is a validation of the science and the spirit of our work."

It is claimed to be a fast, accurate and easy-to-use application with the ability to overcome a number of limitations faced by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) pathogen-testing methods.

The system also accommodates individual, pathogen-specific assays, which allows users in the meat, poultry and other food and beverage categories to conduct up to 96 different tests for a range of organisms simultaneously using numerous food and environmental samples.

3M Food Safety global vice-president Polly Foss said: “Protecting food, consumers and businesses with innovative and reliable technologies has been at the core of everything we do, so the USDA FSIS’ selection of 3M as a partner is a validation of the science and the spirit of our work.

“The 3M molecular detection system has proven to be a highly accurate and efficient tool for many food producers globally.”

The company noted that its next-generation molecular detection assays have been validated for a wide variety of sample types by several scientific validation organisations worldwide, including AOAC International, the Association Française de Normalisation (AFNOR) and MicroVal.

3M Food Safety previously completed the integration of Elution Technologies in April.

Elution Technologies is a Vermont-based manufacturer of test kits, which allow food and beverage processors to test their products and manufacturing environments for potential food allergens such as peanut, milk and gluten.