Frederique Heering is an experienced manager in the field of Quality Assurance for (infant) food.
Frederique started her career at Eureka at the Ministry of Economic Affairs as National Project Coordinator. After that she started to work at Numico where she worked for 11 years, being the Vice President Quality and Food Safety. In 2008 she started her own business in supporting (infant) food companies in all kind of activities like setting up and implementing crisis management systems, upgrading factories to infant food quality, internal audit systems etc. As of November 2015 she is QA Director of FrieslandCampina.
Abstract Presentation: From dairy production to infant nutrition: the changing quality environment
Infants are not small adults. The main difference is that babies gut development is not completed yet, so babies are far more vulnerable to all kind of (opportunistic) pathogens, contaminants and foreign matters than adults are. Moreover for babies the infant food provided is their sole nutrition and the consumption per kg body weight is at least 10 times higher than adults. This has a huge effect on the way of producing infant food. In most infant food business, infant food is produced in ‘normal’ dairy factories which has to be transformed in factories dedicated for infant food. It is not possible to do a “little bit”’ infant food production, the whole factory, mindset of people, validation of equipment and testing procedures has to be infant food proof. Moreover as infant food is the sole nutrition, each and every consumer unit has to contain exactly the required amount of vitamins/minerals to ensure proper growth of the baby. This is quite a challenge as the main raw material (milk/whey) has quite a natural variation of vitamins/minerals. Moreover this means that de mixing and adding of vitamins/minerals in dry blending has high requirements. From a microbiological point of view the main challenge is the control of and reduction of Cronobacter spp in the environment. The main drivers for reduction are the adequate management of raw material (suppliers), getting rid of the water used in the factory for cleaning, proper validation of all processes (including CIP), zoning and people behavior.