Food Processing Industry

CIFT provides the following services for food processors:

Food_processingFood Safety Consulting

CIFT's expert network of food scientists offers a full range of food safety services to food processors through microbiological consulting and testing, food safety auditing, and food safety and quality training.  We also help processors develop food product handling practices and procedures, including worker hygiene and sanitation practices.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) lists recalls, withdrawals and alerts on their website, which includes the most significant product actions of the last 60 days, based on the extent of distribution and the degree of health risk.  Learn more about the latest FDA food recall notices.

Ohio MEP

The Ohio MEP is a regional effort coordinated by CIFT which combines resources from Ohio entities located at Northwest State Community College (Archbold) and Rhodes State College (Lima), who serve as partners in delivering valuable services to manufacturers within a 19 county territory.

Ohio_MEP_4c_copyThe Ohio MEP offices serve as partners in delivering valuable services to manufacturers across Ohio.  Plus, staff has resources available beyond northwest Ohio through other Ohio MEP partners. Click here to learn more. 

Cost-Effective Training Solution

Alchemy is the global leader in food and workplace safety training for production workers.  More than 1,400 large food manufacturing and processing facilities worldwide use the SISTEM® training platform to increase productivity, reduce food safety incidents, and lower compliance risk.

CIFT is proud to introduce Alchemy’s SISTEM Express, a cost-effective solution designed specifically for small- and medium-sized food manufacturers.  SISTEM will help achieve compliance with industry regulations/standards, such as the Food Safety Modernization Act and the Global Food Safety Initiative, using fewer resources and in less time.  Each 15-20 minute course captures the participant’s attention with an engaging video followed by learning objectives and multiple-choice questions.  If a question is answered incorrectly, SISTEM reiterates the learning objective and alters the question to ensure comprehension before continuing.  Courses conclude with a video and fun game to recap important information.

SISTEM tracks, documents, and reports training activities in a secure, web-based application.  A variety of training status reports can be generated for your audits that meet federal e-signature requirements, no sign-in sheets required.

The cost is only $200/employee - includes as many courses as desired for one year.  Contact Alan Bernard, project manager, CIFT at 419-535-6000, ext. 107 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Market Research

CIFT has access to a continuously updated collection of market research information with more than 300,000 reports from 700 leading global publishers.  With this tool, assistance can be offered to Ohio food companies on new product trends, the latest in packaging, emerging ethnic foods, or competitive analysis of new or existing markets.  Such information is critical to maintaining a competitive edge in new and established markets. 

Through this service, general reports associated with trends to specific IRI data and industry analysis on a product category can be achieved.  CIFT member companies have access to such information as a compliment to inclusion within the consortium.  Companies not yet affiliated with the membership are able to gain access for a fee.  Examples of reports include the following: 

  • Food Flavors and Ingredients Outlook 2012, 9th Edition; Packaged Facts
  • U.S. Market for Nutraceuticals Ingredients; Taiyou Research 
  • Food Industry Review 2010; The Food Institute
  • Snack Food in the U.S. 2011 Edition; Beverage Marketing 

Specific information requests can be submitted to CIFT for review and consideration of market analysis.  Contact Cathy Witte, food market and technology analyst, at 419-535-6000, ext. 142 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  

Product and Package Development

New and emerging technologies in the areas of food processing, preservation and packaging are widespread.  CIFT's network of food scientists and business advisors work with industry and academia to bring innovations to the marketplace, helping food processors optimize their operations.


Technology Development & Prototyping

CIFT collaborates with a variety of food equipment manufacturers to develop prototype equipment for evaluation and commercialization. By tapping into available resources, food based companies can benefit from new equipment applications and technologies and, ultimately, enhance their competitiveness within the marketplace.

Engineering Assistance

Extending your team of engineers when the need arises, CIFT provides engineering assistance to food equipment companies on a project-by-project basis.

Technology Commercialization

CIFT leads the way in the commercialization of several newly patented technologies.  Our equipment partners play a critical role in the commercialization process by exploring, designing, building and helping to market the novel equipment.  As a result, equipment manufacturers develop new relationships and generate additional business revenue.


Technology Transfer

Utilizing a network of university researchers, government agencies, and industry suppliers, CIFT actively pursues research opportunities with an emphasis on potential commercial interest.  Many of these applications involve connecting equipment manufacturers to develop pilot plant equipment with the ultimate goal of product and process commercialization.

Waste Reduction & Remediation

CIFT's staff of engineers specializes in identifying Pollution Prevention (P2) initiatives that have a positive impact on bottom line financials. CIFT helps reduce the adverse impacts of wastewater and manage process wastes and by-products, including reducing the impact of wastewater discharge through innovative treatment and/or reuse of process water. Our expertise includes environmental regulatory compliance that relates to wastewater discharge, air emissions, storm water, pollution prevention plans, and spill prevention control plans.

Energy Efficiency Consulting

Energy usage and efficiency is a priority issue for greenhouse operators. CIFT’s staff of engineers performs energy use assessments to identify energy efficiency and cost savings opportunities through implementation of energy efficient equipment, controls and processes. An Energy Usage and Cost Analysis includes power rate structures, tariff analysis, as well as electrical usage and demand trend analysis. Feasibility, program development and implementation recommendations are essential in successful energy efficiency improvements.