Physical Testing Services


Quality is not negotiable when it comes to meeting the demands of suppliers and customers. Defects in raw ingredients and finished products can lead to wasted goods, affect supplier relationships, and alienate customers. Mérieux NutriSciences works with the world's leading food service chains and retailers to measure aspects of quality.

We offer a wide spectrum of physical tests on raw ingredients and finished products. Our consultants use their technical know-how and data analysis skills to evaluate products against defined specifications. Using analytical testing, visual evaluation, applicable data and records, we identify product variations and pinpoint potential safety and quality risks in concise and confidential reports.


This service is not currently accredited.

Quantity Checks (Net Mass and Volume, Gross, Drained & Washed Mass)

Prepackaged food, by law, has to bear a declaration of the quantity of the product within the packet, and that declaration has to be accurate. Products containing brine, oil or another liquid medium, or products that are coated with a glazing agent have specific product mass specifications. Food packets containing less food than the declared mass or volume is illegal. On the other hand, overfilling may lead to unnecessary costs to producers. Mérieux NutriSciences can verify, evaluate and monitor product mass to ensure that products on the shelves comply.

Composition and Dimension

Physical composition and product dimensions are important specifications for product consistency and quality. Composition and product dimensions in some products are regulated, whilst retailers and customers usually also have product compositional and dimension requirements. Mérieux NutriSciences can evaluate and monitor product performance to ensure products consistently meet customer and/or legal requirements.

Can and Packaging Quality Tests
(Can Head Space, Vacuum, Label Screen and Code Date Conformance)

Finished product quality is the determining factor of the safety and enjoyment experience of the product to the consumer. Mérieux NutriSciences can evaluate quality aspects of finished packaged food products that may point to some production issues within facilities, or product handling and logistical problems. Mérieux NutriSciences can evaluate cans by measuring the finished products’ can head space and vacuum or acceptability of the quality of the overall label and coding - in accordance to legal and customer specifications - ensuring the consumer consistently enjoys a quality experience when purchasing your product. Mérieux NutriSciences can also review the legality of content of your food product label.

Cooking Instructions

Cooking instructions or instructions for use are a labelling requirement on all products that require special preparation before consumption - and the accurate preparation of food is a crucial determining factor in the quality and enjoyment of a food product.

Mérieux NutriSciences can generate and evaluate cooking instructions, to ensure the cooked product is safe and of a high quality. By using kitchen appliances similar to those the consumer will use to prepare food at home. After cooking, the product undergoes testing as per your specific requirements, like microbiology and sensory evaluation to evaluate the properties of the prepared or final product. Mérieux NutriSciences will prepare a concise report on the findings with possible technical recommendations.

Sensory Evaluation

At the end of the day, the sensory experience (taste, smell, colour and overall appearance, texture) is what drives the consumer to make an instant decision of whether he will purchase a product again. Sensory evaluation is a valuable tool during product evaluation over a time period (shelf life testing), for product benchmarking and during research and development of new products. Mérieux NutriSciences can give valuable input by performing sensory evaluations tailored to your specific needs.

Retail Experience

As an independent party, Mérieux NutriSciences can be your partner in retail purchasing for testing purposes and evaluating retail experience against your company’s specification. This unbiased information may be invaluable to allow you to successfully resolve customer complaints and to pinpoint where improvements are required to ensure brand success.

Sample Collection

Mérieux NutriSciences has a fleet of highly efficient drivers who will collect samples or deliver sterile sample containers to your premises in the greater Cape Town and Midrand areas. Sample collections from clients beyond these areas are maintained through door-to-door couriers.

Our drivers have been trained in sample handling procedures to ensure that samples arrive at the laboratory timeously and at the right temperature. Each car is fitted with a built-in fridge to ensure sample integrity during transport.

Sample Submission

Samples can be submitted during business hours (08h00 to 16h30) during the week or on Saturdays (by prior arrangement). All new/dormant clients should open an account before submitting samples to the laboratory.

Clients can download a sample submission form (or contact our Customer Service Department for a copy) to assist with selecting tests when submitting samples to the laboratory.

Request a Quotation

Please complete this online form to request a quotation or contact our Customer Service Department.