Using LIMS in Microbiological Testing for the Food and Beverage Industry

Food Safety Net Services is a network of ISO/IES 17025: 2005 accredited laboratories that supply a wide variety of microbiological testing and analytical services for the food & beverage industry.

Testing consists of routine and non-routine qualitative and quantitative analysis following validated and standardized methods like FDA, USP, USDA,  ASTA, AOCS, AOAC, to name a few.

FSNS also provides a wide scope of auditing services, which synergistically improve the effectiveness of food quality and safety programs, plus the comprehensive set of laboratory testing services.

FSNS helps companies to ensure that their food safety and quality programs produce the crucial information they need to continually improve their measurement systems and process controls. They help organizations to meet and develop effective contingency planning in accordance with governmental regulatory requirements.

Key challenges

FSNS struggled with outdated, heavily customized LIMS, which was challenging to upgrade as it was based on older technology. The legacy system was unable to satisfy FSNS’ increasing need for a robust solution with thin client or browser-based access. FSNS also required a simple to use, intuitive interface, for their expanding user base as they continued their business growth.

FSNS needed a flexible solution which supported regular customer audits. It was crucial for them to be able to connect LIMS to sophisticated lab instruments for end manual data entry and automated data capture. An outdated system hampered efficiency at FSNS severely.

System sought

FSNS were looking for a modern, dynamic, flexible and fully browser-based solution with the capability to support common food testing sample types, which could be configured and associated with multiple tests.

A common browser-based interface for all users was a key requirement. In order to meet the growing business requirements, superior system performance was also crucial. FSNS had to connect with simple lab equipment (e.g. digital scales) and bi-directional interface with complex /computer-controlled equipment.

The system was also required to interface with other systems like Great Plains Accounting Software, SharePoint, and customer systems. Lastly, it was crucial for FSNS to implement a customer portal to supply their live access to data and world-class service to meet their customers’ expectations.

LabVantage offered a dynamic, configurable and modern sitemap for single-click access.

LabVantage offered a dynamic, configurable and modern sitemap for single-click access. Image Credit: LabVantage Solutions

Successful system implementation

LabVantage has been operational at Food Safety Net Services since May 31, 2002. Based on assessments of around 100 LIMS vendors, FSNS chose the LabVantage LIMS solution for enterprise deployment, as it supplied the best value considering up-front price, ongoing system maintenance costs, system flexibility, responsiveness, and the ability to handle emerging and complex business requirements.

LabVantage were able to help FSNS by supplying a single browser-based user interface, flexible sample types to eliminate test assignment mistakes, and a faster operating speed. They have seen massive improvements in multiple areas of their overall lab processes.

Being able to standardize custom sample types over multiple locations speeds up login data processing times by approximately 15%. The page refresh with LabVantage is approximately 50% faster than their legacy system, which meant user satisfaction grew. As a result of having the choice to enter numerous sample data on the same screen, the data entry time decreased significantly by around 15%.

Instead of trying to work with a rigid, complicated, and customized system, which made future upgrades problematic, FSNS were able to leverage the flexible LabVantage platform and configure the solution to meet their changing business needs.

In order to ensure smooth operational efficiency, The system gives easy access to over 50 concurrent FSNS users with no compromise in performance. It also supplies the necessary audit trail for traceability and audit purposes.

FSNS is committed to growing their employment of LabVantage and is on target to implement a LabVantage client portal to cater to hundreds of their customers’ requirements.

Looking ahead

FSNS is dedicated to using LabVantage in their existing labs, in addition to any future labs. They aim to increase the use of extra features like test batching, label printing, e-submissions, and a dedicated client portal.

LabVantage supplied FSNS with the ability to modify multiple samples and their associated details on one screen.

FSNS recommends LabVantage for their expertise and leadership in the LIMS industry.

LabVantage provided FSNS the ability to modify multiple samples and their associated details on a single screen.

LabVantage provided FSNS the ability to modify multiple samples and their associated details on a single screen. Image Credit: LabVantage Solutions

About LabVantage Solutions

LabVantage Solutions, Inc. is the leading global laboratory informatics provider. Our industry-leading LIMS and ELN solution and world-class services are the result of 35+ years of experience in laboratory informatics. LabVantage offers a comprehensive portfolio of products and services that enable companies to innovate faster in the R&D cycle, improve manufactured product quality, achieve accurate recordkeeping and comply with regulatory requirements.

LabVantage is a highly configurable, web-based LIMS/ELN that powers hundreds of laboratories globally, large and small. Built on a platform that is widely recognized as the best in the industry, LabVantage can support hundreds of concurrent users as well as interface with instruments and other enterprise systems. It is the best choice for industries ranging from pharmaceuticals and consumer goods to molecular diagnostics and bio banking. LabVantage domain experts advise customers on best practices and maximize their ROIs by optimizing LIMS implementation with a rapid and successful deployment.


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Last updated: May 27, 2020 at 5:33 AM

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