GMA publishes a Listeria monocytogenes Guidance on Environmental Monitoring and Corrective Actions in At-risk Foods” to help food manufacturers prevent potential cross-contamination of finished products.

Grocery Manufacturers Association GMA | July 7, 2014.


Listeria monocytogenes, being widely distributed in nature, has the potential to find harborage in many types of food processing facilities and has been associated with outbreaks across various food categories. Therefore, manufacturers of all types of food products should conduct a risk assessment to determine if a Environmental Monitoring Program is appropriate for the specific operation. The intent of this guidance document is to provide information to food manufacturers producing at-risk foods to help them design a Listeria Environmental Monitoring Program (LEMP), which will in turn verify the efficacy of the relevant prerequisite programs (such as sanitation, employee practices and sanitary design). The guidance will discuss the need to conduct extensive investigative sampling when a potential harborage is identified, when to escalate LEMP activities, and when to consider finished product testing. Using these techniques over time with appropriate data analysis and corrective actions will help to reduce the likelihood of contamination of product with L. monocytogenes and thus reduce overall incidence of consumer illness. This guidance document was prepared by industry experts, scientists and GMA representatives, amongst which Commercial Food Sanitation’s microbiology expert Richard Brouillette. The complete guidance document can be downloaded from this website in the Documents section under General Documentation.

About GMA

The Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) and its members are committed to ensuring that consumers have safe, healthy food and grocery options. A top priority for GMA and its members is ensuring that food products achieve the highest possible safety standards. As part of this objective, GMA strives to share best practices amongst its members. GMA works industry experts and scientist to promote science-based, fact-based legislative and regulatory decisions and evaluate emerging scientific research and interpret findings for member companies and policymakers. See more at GMA’s website.