Food and beverage industry: particle and contamination analysis

The production of beverages and food is subject to strict food safety regulations. Despite tight controls and far-reaching quality control measures, the migration of foreign particulate matter into food cannot be excluded completely along the supply chain, whether through harvest-related entry, processing, production or packaging processes, or through the storage and transport of goods.

In order to safely prevent further contamination of the derived products, both the type and source of contamination must be clearly identified.

In the event of customer complaints, a plausibility check of the respective foreign particles by analytical comparison is useful.

The SGS INSTITUT FRESENIUS has many years of experience in the identification of unknown particles, foreign bodies or deposits that indicate deviations in the production process of food and beverages.

We are eminently familiar with analytical tasks in the field of food contact materials (FCM) with respect to cleanliness analysis and the characterization of released particles or outgassing substances.

Using modern testing methods, we identify foreign particulate matter and other contaminations and support you during the troubleshooting process.

Our services

  • Product monitoring for impurities or particles (e.g. metal or wood shavings, glass splinters, paint or plastic particles, microplastics, hair, organic agglomerates, parts of insects, etc.)
  • Check for unwanted substances and identification of particles from consumer goods with food contact (e.g. kettles)
  • Fault & damage analysis: corrosion damage to parts, mechanical damage due to wear, membrane blocking
  • Analytical support in case of incidents in production
  • Investigation of impurities in materials, media, packaging, and surfaces
  • Testing of food contact materials for release of ionic, particulate or outgassing impurities
  • Characterization of plastics and their composition
  • Determination and identification of microplastics in beverages such as mineral water, drinking water
  • Investigation for emissions of microplastics from tea bags

Our methods

A comprehensive range of powerful analytical methods allows us an unambiguous characterization of the foreign particulate matter.

  • Light microscope detection, measurement and photographic documentation of particulate impurities and foreign bodies in the product
  • Identification of organic, inorganic and plastic particles (and additives, if applicable) by Raman and FT-IR spectroscopy
  • Analysis of largely inorganic particles (elemental composition and fine structure of metals, glass, ceramic and mineral materials, etc.) by means of SEM-EDX and other methods
  • Analysis of water-soluble anionic and cationic impurities by means of ion chromatography (Trace-IC)
  • Identification of volatile components in packaging materials using our VOC-Ident-Procedure


Königsbrücker Landstr. 161
01109 Dresden

t +49 351 8841-200
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