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Chemical Surveillance of Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines

Farmers worldwide use more than two million tons of chemical pesticides each year. Whilst each pesticide is assessed by Regulators (and are regarded as safe when used correctly) they can make their way into a land, water and air source, and, in some cases when used incorrectly, have the potential to affect the whole ecosystem, as well as being harmful to human health. As a consequence, the concentrations of pesticides in food and animal feed are strictly controlled.

Food producers are responsible for the safety and quality of their products. To protect your business and minimise the risk of negative health impacts, you need to comply with the relevant guidelines and standards for minimising levels of harmful pesticides in the food chain and the environment. For such a critical service, you need a partner you can trust to deliver precise, quality results. Being the National Reference Laboratory for pesticides residues gives you the confidence that we will provide you with reliable, accurate testing results, ensuring the quality and safety of your products and processes and ultimately safeguarding the image of your brand.

Mass spectrometry is the preferred technique at Fera for the identification, quantification and profiling of chemicals (both good and bad) in food. The development of mass spectrometers and related techniques has grown at pace over the last 3 - 5 years. This has included continued improvements to sensitivity (detection limits), a new capability to both target and profile chemicals in food within a single experiment, miniaturisation and the introduction of techniques that can provide measurements on the surface of products (such as tablets and packaging materials) within a few seconds. Fera has invested in all of these advanced technologies and works in strategic partnership with instrument manufacturers to ensure that these new technologies are both suitable and advantageous to the food industry.

Pesticides and veterinary medicines analyses are delivered by our highly experienced scientists and regulatory experts following these steps:

  • Gathering chemical composition, as complete as possible, for the material, including all relevant information from the manufacturing process
  • Analytical screening - this includes investigations utilising our preferred analytical approach to determine all potential migrants to identify and semi-quantify the presence of pesticides & veterinary medicines using just one single sample to streamline the time required
  • Identification of hazardous substances based on international recognised scientific principles on risk assessment
  • Exposure assessment - migration studies and/or exposure assessment to define real exposure and estimated daily intake
  • Final risk assessment on any potential health risk associated with the final material or article.

Our scientists and regulatory experts, who have more than 30 years' experience in food chemical surveillance testing are able to deliver cost effective analytical data, regulatory guidance and documentation to achieve compliance for your food and so help you to strengthen your advantage in the marketplace, making Fera the ideal partner when you need that expertise to meet pesticides and veterinary medicines' requirements.

National Reference Laboratory

We are the National Reference Laboratory for:

  • Food, Feed and Food Contact Materials
  • Pesticide Residues
  • Veterinary Medicine Residues

Contact Us - Food

T: +44 (0)300 100 0323


Food Brochure

Download the latest brochure here Food Integrity & Traceability brochure

  • Extensive scope of UKAS (ISO17025) accredited tests
  • National Reference Laboratory Status
  • Extensive range of experts & multiplex testing where possible