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Rapid Methods for the Detection of Chemical Contaminants in Food

With this course, we want to increase trust in rapid methods, presenting the capabilities of these analytical alternatives in the control of chemical contaminants in food


There are a number of recognized health risks with consuming contaminated food. As a result, the regulatory agencies require strict control of contaminants in products to ensure food is safe for human consumption. However, this can increase the costs for food industry to ensure effective control measures. This training in rapid detection methods intends to present alternative technologies to the expensive, tedious, and time-consuming analytical techniques used for the monitoring and control of chemical contaminants in food products. Rapid methods can deliver the detection capability required by the MRLs (maximum residue levels) defined in legislation and they can be easily implemented in routine analysis allowing the verification of products' safety and quality in a faster, inexpensive, and more sustainable manner.

The training will explore general innovative technical aspects through lectures blended with practical hands-on laboratory work. Topics will address the extraction of different contaminants from food, different technologies for their detection and analytical possibilities contemplated in the rapid methods commercially available.

This training is targeted to:

  • Professionals involved in quality control of food products from SMEs and large food industries and/or laboratories
  • Learners with experience on food safety control and good knowledge about their products and particular safety requirements, as well as concerned about future food safety issues and interested in implementing new technologies to improve monitoring


As the rapid tests for COVID changed our perception on rapid diagnosis tests, the proposed activity wants to increase trust in rapid methods, presenting the capabilities of these analytical alternatives in the control of chemical contaminants in food.

The aim is to provide participants with knowledge to select the methods that are more suitable and responds to their needs and expectations. Rapids methods will support the monitoring of food products, adding value and guaranteeing a more agile control of food safety and quality. Sustainability is also an important factor to consider since the use of these methodologies may reduce not only the time of analysis and loss of products, but also the chemicals required to perform the contaminants analysis.

This training aims to empower the participants to implement and use these rapid methods along the control points in food industries. The monitoring of chemical contamination in foodstuff is required in legislation for several compounds and in very diverse food products. This training will provide learners with different alternatives that can help to enhance and guarantee the food safety. Furthermore, it will contribute to develop skills such as “Problem Solving” and “Critical Thinking” for a faster decision process on food materials and safety issues associated with them.

Career Opportunities

This training will provide the participants with a guideline to select different rapid methods and portable equipment as analytical tools to help show adherence to European regulations and standards, to monitor chemical contamination and ensure the safety of our food chain. Furthermore, the training will provide the participants with technical skills and knowledge on rapid methods which they can then use within their career within the food industry. It will all contribute to develop problem solving and critical thinking competences for faster decision making on food materials and safety issues associated with them.

The training will encourage the implementation of rapid methods and the creation of new control points along the fabrication process, contributing to the development of new and robust rapid methods that supports the food safety chain. This training intends to provide a collaboration between participants and with external partners (including start-ups, industry and public) to drive the uptake of innovation in the sector.

Duration & Dates

The programme lasts 2 days, on the 14th and 15th of December 2022.

Audience & Eligibility

More information under Objectives




150€, inclusive VAT



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Structure & Modules

It will consist of a two-day course including state-of-the-art knowledge on rapid methods for monitoring chemical contaminants in food (during the morning) and hands-on laboratory sessions (during the afternoon).

The program will include insights into sources, effects, and risks of chemical contamination in food, regulatory requirements and outlook in emergent contaminants, state-of-art in rapid methods available for food contaminants’ control with insights into economic and sustainable benefits. Hands-on sessions design to show the capabilities of rapid methods to meet the legal standards and reduce analytical costs.

Programme lead

Alejandro Barranco

PhD Principal, Researcher at AZTI