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Food Technology - Process and Product Review Testing

We offer a team approach to offer Process and Product Review services to benefit Maine’s food industry.

Our team consists of:

  • Kathy Davis-Dentici, Research Assistant and Laboratory Manager, conducts and supervises food testing
  • Dr. Al Bushway, Professor Emeritus of Food Science, conducts process and product reviews
  • Dr. Beth Calder, new incoming Process Authority, conducts process and product reviews.
  • Dr. Jason Bolton, new incoming Associate Process Authority, conducts process and product reviews.






We primarily conduct process and product reviews on acidified canned food products.  For more information on FDA’s guidance on acidified foods, please visit this FDA web site:

Confidentiality note:  Submitted recipes are kept strictly confidential.   However, test results will be shared with regulatory agencies as part of the product review process.

***As of May 1, 2013, we will be using our new testing price structure below:

In-state: Out-of-State:
Test: Pricing Test: Pricing
pH $13.00 pH $21.00
Water activity $13.00 Water activity $21.00
Brix $13.00 Brix $21.00
Microbial analysis $55.00 Microbial analysis $85.00
Water phase salt $30.00 Water phase salt $45.00
Filing Scheduled Process $80.00 Filing Scheduled Process $125.00

*Pickled (acidified foods) will need pH and water activity tests.

**Caramel, chocolate and dessert sauces will need pH, water activity and brix.

Food samples that do not typically require a review are baked goods (without dairy-based fillings/frostings), candy/confections, fruit-based jams/jellies and dry mixes.

We will also provide HACCP verification testing such as water-phase salt for brined seafood products and dried/fermented products such as jerky and sausages.


What is required to submit a food product for review:

  • Please include your name, company name, email, mailing address and phone number.
  • One container of each finished product in the container in which it will be sold.  For acidified foods (i.e. pickled foods, sauces, dressings) if you intend to sell your product in several different container sizes, please submit 1 sample of each container size.
  • Recipe (with ingredients and amounts, preferably based on weight in grams).
  • Detailed process description of how each product is made including processing times and temperatures.
  • Please limit the number of samples to 10 per review.
  • Please be sure to place an identifying label on each product.
  • For ready to eat, raw, refrigerated and minimally processed foods – you may need additional microbial testing; please contact Beth (contact information below) to schedule a time to send in your product for testing.
  • Payment – payable to the University of Maine.   Results will not be released until full payment is received.

Kathy Davis-Dentici

Pack your product carefully and mail to:

Kathy Davis-Dentici
University of Maine
Food Science and Human Nutrition
5735 Hitchner Hall, Room 204
Orono, Maine  04469-5735


The review and results are usually sent within 10 business days, but can be delayed due to holidays, type of testing or volume of products submitted for testing.


Questions about testing?

If you have any questions whether you should send in a product for a review, which tests are required for your product, or how to start a food business in Maine, please contact Dr. Beth Calder or Dr. Jason Bolton.

Beth Calder, Ph.D.
Extension Food Science Specialist
University of Maine
Food Science and Human Nutrition
5735 Hitchner Hall, Room 232
Orono, Maine 04469-5735
207-581-2791 or email:

Jason Bolton, Ph.D.
Extension Food Safety Specialist
University of Maine
Cooperative Extension
207-581-1366 or email:

Other Resources:

Starting a new food business and need some guidance on how to get started?

Please visit this online fact sheet called Recipe to Market:  Recipe to Market Workshops are also available on how to start a food business, please contact Beth if you are interested in attending a workshop.

Food safety workshops for Maine food industries:


Need Microbiological testing, shelf-life, accelerated shelf-life testing and nutrition analysis for labels?

Two laboratories in Maine provide these services:

Katahdin Analytical:

Northeast Laboratory Services:


Need to obtain a license to sell food products in Maine?

Food licenses are obtained through the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation & Forestry, Quality Assurance and Regulations and online applications can be downloaded at this web site:

Regulatory or inspection questions?  Please visit this web site for contact information:


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