Food sampling design and collection Services

Food sampling services for the Food Standards Agency (FSA) and laboratories

Since July 2013 HallMark has been responsible for the sampling design, implementation, delivery and successful completion on time and to budget of over 13 research and survey projects, including liaison with relevant project officers, statisticians and selected Laboratories.

Projects have ranged from 200 to over 3,000 samples and have included microbiological, fresh, packed and bottled foods and farm samples. Sample sources include small and large retailers, convenience stores, farms and online shops.

The following are examples of projects recently completed or currently being undertaken:

  • - Project Ref FS102081 UK Total Diet Study (TDS) of Metals and other elements (+ acrylamide in selected categories.
  • - FS102109 EU Harmonised Survey of Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) on Retail Meats – Retail sample collection, transportation and Survey design services (Year 1/year 2/Year 3/Year4/year 5 and year 6).
  • - FS101196 Surveillance Study of Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) in Campylobacter on Chicken and AMR in Salmonella on Pork sampled at retail. Lot 1 Study design, sample collection at retail and transportation to the testing laboratory.
  • - FS515018 Study on Geographic Origin Testing.
  • - FS102048 –Survey of metals in commercial infant foods, infant formula and non-infant specific foods.
  • - FS102056 Occurrence of Pyrrolizidine Alkaloids in food.
  • - FS102071 Investigation of PAH levels in chocolate and chocolate confectionery products.
  • - FS102074 Sample collections and radiological analysis of bottled water.
  • - FS102101 Determination of masked mycotoxins in cereals and cereal-based foods.
  • - FS102077 An Investigation of Perchlorate Levels in Fruit and Vegetables Consumed in the UK.
  • - FS1161 Monitoring of chlorate in Fruit and Vegetables.
  • - FS102126 Retail Survey of T-2/ HT-2 toxin levels in oat based products.
  • - FS102076 An Investigation to establish the types and levels of non-volatile N-nitroso compounds (NOC) in UK consumed foods produced by Fermentation.
  • - FS301050 Burden of Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) Genes in Selected Ready-to-Eat Foods.

Examples of Laboratories HallMark has worked with include Public Health England, Animal and Plant Health Agency, The Food and Environment Research Agency, Premier Analytical Services and Scientific Services. The Sampling Operations Team is led by Diego Sprekelsen, a member of HallMark’s senior management team with direct experience of leading sampling work and managing large teams. HallMark has an established relationship with the Royal Veterinary College, engaging them in maintaining scientific standards. In addition, they provide expert advice on the design and delivery of sampling strategies.

The HallMark Sampling System (HMSS) is a custom-built platform (an Innovative IT tool) for managing sampling projects that enables management of the entire sampling process, connecting with multiple laboratories and projects. The system is based on tried and tested operational experience working for the FSA in sample collection across a range of wide variety of sampling projects.

For more information about our sample collection services, vacancies and how to become a surveyor, please contact us on