What are the 3 letters that should strike fear into the heart of every food executive? No, the 3 letters are not F-D-A. Although the Food and Drug Administration is quite powerful, the agency can only wield that power against a particular food company when it has the evidence to do so.
The 3 letters we are referring to are W-G-S – which stands for Whole Genome Sequencing – because this new scientific tool can give FDA that evidence – indeed, compelling evidence that a food needs to be recalled and, potentially, that a food facility needs to be shut down. In this way, WGS is truly revolutionizing food safety.
Here is what we mean. Even though there are hundreds of types of Salmonella – the most prevalent pathogen – each individual Salmonella strain found has its own unique gene sequence. Think of it like a super fingerprint.