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Postdoctoral Position in Quantitative Microbiological Risk Assessment

ABG-79242 Emploi Confirmé
12/07/2018 CDD 18 Mois > 25 et < 35 K€ brut annuel
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INRA Secalim
Nantes - Pays de La Loire - France
Agronomie
  • Biologie
  • Mathématiques
Microbiology, Risk Assessment, Modelling, Meat
Recherche et Développement

Employeur

Secalim UMR1014 is a joint research unit between INRA and ONIRIS.

INRA is the French National Institute for Agricultural Research under the dual aegis of the Ministry of Research and the Ministry of Agriculture. ONIRIS is the the Nantes-Atlantic National College of Veterinary Medicine, Food Science and Engineering.

Composed of 30 people, the mission of Secalim consists of producing and diffusing knowledge and scientific methods in the field of food microbiology regarding the control, characterization and quantitative assessment of microbial risk (pathogens and spoilage bacteria) in meat and seafood products. (https://www6.angers-nantes.inra.fr/secalim_eng/).

Projet will be conducted in collaboration with an intgernational partnair fdron the UCD (School of Biosystems and Food Engineering), a highly active centre of research with 10 academics, and circa 80 researchers (graduate + postdoctoral). Its mission is to develop and apply science and engineering scholarship to problems in environmental health, food and agriculture for the benefit of society through excellence in research.

Both teams have strong capability in QMRA and are complementary: UCD will bring its expertise in sophisticated modelling and probability theory and Secalim will take advantage of its strong experience in industry and meat applications. Secalim and UCD have existing collaborations.

The team obtained funding through the Region Pays de la Loire, under the program Research-Training-Innovation « Food for Tomorrow-Cap Aliment », Axe 6 (Tools, technologies, modelling, integration of knowledge) and Axe 3 (Safety value chains of primary production and food processing).

Poste et missions

The postdoctoral researcher will be in charge of the Meat'Integrate project. The aim of the project is to evaluate, improve (additional functionalities) and integrate available models of QMRA (Quantitative Microbial Risk Assessment) of meat in an innovative quantitative risk ranking tool which will be applied to meat in France.

France is one of the major producers of meat in Europe but is also the country with the largest number of reported foodborne outbreaks due to pathogenic bacteria in meat. In recent years, a modern risk-based food safety management system has emerged to prevent foodborne illness based on the prevention of public health risks rather than end product testing and control. In this context QMRA has gained particular attention to support the decision making process in food safety.

For meat, several QMRAs have been performed for different pathogenic bacteria, however they have been either very specific to a food safety situation (making them inflexible to measure risk for other situations), incomplete in terms of modelling approach, or not covering the entire farm-to-fork continuum. Moreover, rarely, have they expressed results in a metric enabling comparison between risks associated with various meat/pathogen pairings. In addition, QMRAs can be complex for risk-decision makers: easy-to-use tools embedding QMRA are necessary. Thus, an integrated tool which addresses these different facets is required.


In this context, the project will provide a new innovative user friendly tool capable of making risk comparisons for different meat/pathogen combinations. This will aid policy makers to make informed decisions regarding risk reduction measures along the farm-to-fork-to-human continuum and thereby helping to reduce foodborne outbreaks and protecting human health, while maintaining international reputation as a producer of safe meat products and also thereby protecting a vital national industry.

Meat’Integrate will build an accessible and easy-to-use tool for researchers, food safety agencies and industrials to perform risk ranking of potential microbial contamination of meat. More broadly in food QMRA, it is intended to push forward modelling limits toward a more comprehensive evaluation using cutting-edge probabilistic techniques. Finally, the application of the tool for meat in France will enable identification of key steps influencing human risk and thus to suggest risk reduction measures at the national scale.

Mobilité géographique :

Internationale

Prise de fonction :

03/12/2018

Profil

He/she will be able to collaborate through strong interaction with both teams involved in the project (INRA and UCD) and will do three months of mobility at the UCD (costs will be covered).

He/she must have completed a PhD degree in the field of microbiology and quantitative risk assessment.

A background in food safety and applied statistics is required as well as basic knowledge in microbiology.

English language skills would be an advantage. French speaking is not required if the candidate speaks English.

We are looking for a post-doctoral researcher highly motivated, dynamic, curious and able to put things into perspective regarding public health issues.

Objectifs

Main objectives of Meat’Integrate is the development of a risk ranking tool: easy to use, free, documented and available online. More precisely, 4 deliverables are expected:

- Report providing an analysis and refinement of existing models on microbiological risk assessment of meat.

- Program underneath the risk ranking tool and its documentation

- Report containing application of the tool to the case study of meat in France, with comparison of different risk reduction measures.

- Talks in conferences and publications on the updated models and the tool.

Moreover, three months of mobility at the UCD are expected (costs will be covered).

 

 

 

 

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