Software increases insight into sanitation programs - Neogen

Screenshot of Neogen's NeoNet software platform

Neogen Corporation has developed a software system that allows immediate access to sanitation test results.

NeoNet is a cloud-based software platform that enables food safety directors to get access, insight and control of the effectiveness of sanitation programs at each of their facilities.

With the system, each facility does adenosine triphosphate (ATP) testing and transfers the results to local computer networks.

The data is then automatically synced to the customer's universal NeoNet system.

Corporate perspective and site specifics

Jim Topper, of Neogen, said it is designed to provide the corporate manager with a corporate perspective while also allowing them to zoom in to the test site level of a particular facility to see trends and potential problem areas.

“The program has an easy-to-use interface that presents problem areas at the top of graphs and charts so the user can see them right away. It also has a report that automatically lists all of the test sites that failed overnight along with their RLU [relative light unit] score, date and time,” he told FoodQualityNews.  

“A second column shows the manager whether a corrective action was performed and the resulting test. There’s also a section that tells the manager whether this is an anomaly or an issue that has been happening regularly.”

Using it with the AccuPoint Advanced test system, a director can review results of each facility's testing or compare one facility with other locations. It also provides historic ATP test result comparisons to current results.

Topper said the challenge for a corporate food safety or sanitation manger with multiple facilities is in viewing, interpreting and reporting the ATP test results from those sites.

“Up until the launch of NeoNet, the corporate manager would need to have the data files sent to them via e-mail or access them one at a time over the company network. Comparisons between and among plants was a very manual and laborious process often involving exporting the data to Excel and wading through it.”

Results are displayed with a bar chart and percentages of pass, marginal and fail results ranked by highest fail percent.

Users can narrow the results to a selected timeframe, such as the past 24 hours, or by the week, month, quarter or year.

Platform extension plans

Topper said it currently only reports ATP results with the AccuPoint Advanced test system.

“But we have designed the program to become a platform for other testing like food allergens, pathogens and general micro. Our first iterations will seek to combine those tests users typically perform in their environmental monitoring programs,” he said.

“We have no plans for making it available for other ATP platforms. We believe it’s an important and valuable extension to our AccuPoint system.”

The program is designed to allow only the corporate user access to test data, said Topper.

“It is password protected and not visible to anyone else, including Neogen. Plant food safety and sanitation personnel have access to their own test results through our Data Manager software installed at their facilities,” he said.

“While Neogen has a number of software products that support our testing platforms we did outsource the programming for NeoNet. We commissioned a software development company with expertise in the Internet of Things. But the design came from Neogen and feedback from customers.”

Ed Bradley, Neogen's VP of food safety, said for organizations that have multiple, far-flung facilities, the challenge has been to efficiently collect and interpret data company-wide.

“This simplified process enables directors to respond more quickly to situations that need their immediate attention - and potentially save their companies from the consequences of an ineffective sanitation effort."

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