FreshTest

It's a matter of safety

Produce Verification

In a world where consumers demand assurances that the food they eat is safe and meets the most stringent standards, you need FreshTest®, a Maximum Residue Limits (MRL) testing solution designed to reduce your risk exposure.

Since 2001 FreshTest has become Australia’s most extensive, cost-effective MRL testing program covering chemical, heavy metal, microbial, water and specialised testing through a strict regime of collection, sample identification, labelling and reporting.

FreshTest is available to all growers directly, but you can have your tests conveniently processed through a central market wholesaler at an affordable price.

Freshmark-SUE-012c Ben Williams Photography-head only
Sue Zacherl - Business Services Manager

Protecting Our Industry

FreshTest is your guarantee for protecting Australians and building your brand’s clean and green reputation. Freshmark provides this service to help maintain Australia’s unparalleled reputation for food safety that has given producers an enviable competitive advantage in the global market and assurances to consumers domestically.

We Have One Goal

To Provide the Highest Quality
Produce to Aussie Tables
Guaranteed!

FreshTest® is the largest and most comprehensive residue testing program in Australian horticulture. Residue testing, colloquially referred to as MRL testing, has been part of Australia’s horticultural landscape since 1945 and forms part of the verification of production and packaging businesses food safety systems.

MRL tests verify if contaminants or impurities that remain on produce through the application of chemicals, heavy metals, fungus, or microorganisms, from natural, industrial, or agriculture activities pose a threat to consumers’ health and growers’ safety, and the entire supply chain.  

Good agricultural practices are proven through chemical, microbial, and heavy metal testing. The test results are assessed against MRLs stipulated in the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code and administered by respective state/territory food authorities.

 

Why Test?

In life you need a doctor, a lawyer, a policeman, and a preacher. But every day, three times a day, you need a farmer, which is why testing is so important and why a farmer’s ultimate responsibility is for the health and wellbeing of all Australians. 

Growers Assurance

Growers are ultimately responsible for undertaking the correct procedures, such as applying chemicals to their crops and having their produce tested. The cost of not complying with these requirements can lead to devastating consequencespotentially demolishing the demand for the impacted product across the whole of Australia.  FreshTest is a growers assurance to their buyers that their produce is safe and great to eat.

from seed to seating

FRESHMARK IS THERE EVERY STEP OF THE WAY

Freshmark conducts all sampling of produce, and the sampling process follows Codex Guidelines.

 

All laboratories used in the FreshTest® program have the relevant National Association of Testing Authorities (NATA) Accreditation for chemical, microbial and heavy metal testing that is performed by that laboratory.

Laboratories used for residue analysis have current NATA Accreditation to ISO/IEC 17025 for the analysis of pesticide residues.

 

Why Test with Freshmark?

Find out how you can quickly, easily and conveniently have your produce tested whilst saving money with Australian horticulture’s largest and most comprehensive testing program.

You Save

Volume testing allows us to provide MRL tests at competitive pricing, savings that are pass onto you. You also save by avoiding duplication of tests.

Your Team

You have a dedicated and experienced team behind you that will provide you with personalised service and who are just a phone call away.

You Choose

You can send your samples directly to the Freshmark office, or you can send your produce to your wholesaler/agent.

Pick-up Service

Freshmark is conveniently located at Sydney Markets allowing us to go down to the Markets and collect your samples from your wholesaler.

Easy Process

The process is straightforward, fill out a Grower Form, fax or email it to us, and we do all the hard work for you.

Quick Results

Turn around times for results are a maximum of six working days. After that, Freshmark will send the results to you directly or to your wholesaler who can find out for you online.

Urgent Tests

Our labs can accommodate urgent test requests, with results provided within 48 hours or 72 hours for a slightly cheaper option.

Confidentiality

All tests are confidential and used for verification of food safety and quality assurance.

Database

All laboratory test results and reports are recorded in the database.

History

All your records are securely reposited into the FreshTest database for reference at any time.

No Duplication

A check of a database is made to ensure that the same produce is not tested twice, as growers produce may have already been tested in any Markets around Australia.

Extra Testing

If there is a current test (up to 6 months old) for a grower, and their produce is already in the database, a wholesaler can elect to test another grower/product or purchase a copy of the current valid test at a greatly reduced price.

Wholesaler & Grower Forms

Wholesaler

Please click DOWNLOAD to get the wholesaler form.

Grower

Please click DOWNLOAD to get the  grower form.

No room for error

Adverse Results

Residue testing programs protect the reputation of the fruit and vegetable industry. It provides the government with effective chemical regulations, as well as assurances to consumers that their food is wholesome and safe to eat. 

If residues exceed legal limits, the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) pesticide inspectors will trace the produce back to the grower to find out why the residue is high and to prevent such produce from being marketed in the future. The growers are then asked to complete a corrective action form to eliminate future overpaying of produce.

Producers who misuse pesticides place themselves and their whole industry at risk.

 

Warning

NSW growers can face prosecution and fines of up to $60,000 for individuals and $120,000 for companies not adhering to chemical label directions.

Don't leave anything to chance.

Reasons for Adverse Results

Incorrect practice is generally the most common reason for adverse detections; therefore all necessary measures should be taken to comply with food safety standards. Producers who misuse pesticides place themselves and their whole industry at risk.  

Most Common

The most common reasons include:

  • Not following the withholding period, which is the time between chemical application and harvest
  • Using the chemical at higher than the label rate specified
  • Using a chemical not registered for use on the crop.

Least Common

Less common reasons include:

  • Spray drift
  • Inadequate cleaning of spray equipment
  • Soil contamination from residual chemicals (such as persistent organochlorines)

 

Incorrect Collections

Incorrect sample collection practices: 

  • Not wearing gloves and touching samples for testing with bare hands
  • Not using a clean unused plastic bags
  • Allowing produce to touch one another, especially if it’s from a different grower
  • Not placing perishable produce in a foam esky with dry ice or an ice brick for transportation

J H Gotts


We have been using FreshTest for our MRL tests for more than 15 years. It is an easy and worry-free process from pick up at our market stand by Freshmark, to the results being available online at our convenience.

Our growers enjoy the reasonable pricing of FreshTest, and we are able to offer this service with next to no hassles.

The range of tests available meet all of our customer and quality assurance requirements, and results are available within seven days. Therefore, we highly recommend FreshTest for all horticultural testing needs.


Emma Gotts

FreshTest

Freshmark is passionate about ensuring we protect those who are most precious to us. Through MRL testing, FreshTest gives consumers peace of mind that the produce they eat is safe.