Exploration of novel technologies to provide rapid and

Project Reference No.: 08-2014
Project Reference No.: 08-2014
Project Title: Exploration of novel technologies to provide rapid and cost-effective
method(s) for counteracting food fraud
Objective/Knowledge Gap
To explore the suitability of novel analytical method(s) for food safety / food
authenticity applications on the island of Ireland.
To validate these method(s) and ascertain their applicability in the field.
To highlight the utility, value-for-money and advantages over existing methods of this
technology transfer / method development to the widest possible audience in the food
production chain on the island of Ireland.
During 2013, high profile cases of food fraud, particularly concerning the detection of
equine DNA in meat products labelled as beef, have impacted negatively on consumer
confidence and were costly to the food industry in terms of financial losses due to lost
sales and product recalls as well as long-term reputational damage. Whilst this was a
specific example, it nonetheless highlighted the possibility that food fraud could be far
more widespread, particularly in the global market for red meat.
The illegal use of
growth promoting drugs, breed fraud (eg. selling lower quality beef such as cow beef
for Aberdeen Angus) and geographic fraud (eg. selling imported beef for locally
produced) are ongoing concerns for the authorities and food industry not least because
of the current battery of detection methods that must be relied for prevention of these
frauds. These methods are invariably very expensive, quite diverse, are difficult to use
and take many days or even weeks to perform and interpret.
This project seeks to identify innovative analytical method(s) for potential application to
food safety / food authenticity testing. These method(s) should show clear advantages
over existing method(s) in terms of cost, ease-of-use, turn-around time and accuracy,
The potential for practical application in the field should also be demonstrated.
The method(s) should be versatile and demonstrate flexibility in terms of different
analytical capacities including, but not limited to:
Rapid speciation determination of food samples
Project Reference No.: 08-2014
Rapid determination of the geographic origin of food samples
Rapid detection of residue contamination of samples
The simultaneous rapid determination of the speciation, geographic origin and
contamination status of food samples
Technical Specification
a) Scope of research
Given the relatively short timeline for completion of the project, potential applicants
need to focus on analytical methods that show considerable promise for direct
application to food safety / food authenticity analysis. Ideally, the method(s) will be
applicable to different analytical capacities such as the aforementioned.
b) Literature review
Applicants will be expected to provide a scientific rationale as to why they have
selected particular method(s) with a supporting literature review.
c) Cost-effectiveness
Applicants must demonstrate the value-added and cost effectiveness of their
proposed method(s).
d) Analysis
The applicability of the described method(s) in the field is an essential element of
this project. Therefore, applicants will be expected to detail in full the analyses of
all practical applications in addition to providing details of the method validation
e) Data Handling and Reporting.
1. After six months, the contractor will submit to safefood an interim report
detailing progress for each deliverable of the project.
2. The contractor is responsible for collating all outcomes and a final report will be
submitted to safefood on completion of the study.
This will include
recommendations for further developments.
3. All forms, documentation and electronic files must be retained by the contractor
until further notice from safefood in case of issues arising after the completion
of the research.
Quality Assurance.
1. The final report must detail the development/transfer, validation and application
of the analytical method(s), the elements of the meat production chain involved
in project, any expert consultations in ascertaining the suitability of the
method(s) for practical implementation, etc.
Project Reference No.: 08-2014
2. safefood may convene a meeting with the contractors during the course of the
research to assess progress.
Evaluation of Tenders
Tender bids will be evaluated according to the quality of proposals and applicants using
the following criteria:
Quality of the proposal:
Anticipated deliverables;
Research method;
Value for money;
Potential for application;
Work plan, including the overall timeframe.
Quality of Applicants:
Experience in subject area;
Existing facilities;
Quality Assurance and Quality Control measures in place.
Duration of Project
24 months (factoring 12 months for technology development/transfer and a further 12
months for method development and practical application).
Scientific Aspects
Potential applicants are encouraged to contact the Research Administration Office at
safefood for further information about this research project.
Tender Application Forms and Guidelines
The Tender Application Form and associated Guidelines can be downloaded from
www.safefood.eu. They can also be obtained by emailing research@safefood.eu,
quoting the project reference number 08-2014. Alternatively please contact safefood
as per the details below.
Ms Gillian Fox/Ms. Veronica Sheehan
Research Coordinator
Research Office
7 Eastgate Avenue
Little Island
Co. Cork
Tel: +353 21-2304100
Fax: +353 21-2304111