IEH Academy

IEH Academy Webinar

Allergen Control Programs and Testing Verification

In this webinar, we’ll explore practical methods for managing allergens in your facility, even if your current products don’t intentionally contain them. 

Webinar Recording


Allergen control continues to be a leading cause of product recalls in the U.S., emphasizing the critical need for effective management in food processing plants. In this webinar, we’ll explore practical methods for managing allergens in your facility, even if your current products don’t intentionally contain them. Verification activities are crucial for demonstrating the effectiveness of these control programs, ensuring product safety, and providing assurance in their ability to safeguard product integrity and accurate labeling. Join us as we discuss effective methods and tools that all food processors should be familiar with to ensure the production of safe products.

Topics Covered

  • Key features of a well-designed allergen control program.
  • Common areas where producers experience deviations or failures in the field.
  • Advantages and disadvantages of common allergen measurement tools.
  • Effective application methods for verifying the functionality of your programs.


Who Should Attend

  • All FSQA staff members.
  • Production leads and production schedulers.
  • Product development members.
  • Purchasing agents


Webinar Length

1 hour with Q&A to follow

Meet the Instructors

Dr. Robert Brackett

Dr. Robert Brackett leads the industry training team under the IEH Academy. He received his Ph.D. in Food Microbiology, his M.S. in Food Microbiology, and his B.S. in Bacteriology from the University of Wisconsin.

Prior to joining IEH, Dr. Brackett served as IIT Vice President and Executive Director of the Institute of Food Safety and Health at Illinois Institute of Technology, and Senior Vice President and Chief Scientific and Regulatory Officer for the Washington, DC based Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) now under the name, Consumer Brands Association.

Prior to serving at GMA, Dr. Brackett worked for the U.S. FDA as the Director of the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, as well as several other executive positions within FDA. Earlier in his career, Dr. Brackett spent 19 years in academia at North Carolina State University where he served as Food Safety Specialist and as Professor at the University of Georgia, where he conducted research on foodborne pathogens.

At IEH, he is focused on developing and executing training programs that will enable the food industry to produce safer and higher quality products. Dr. Brackett is an expert on the microbiological and chemical safety of processed foods and fresh produce. He has over 40 years of experience on factors that affect the growth and survival of foodborne pathogens in both fresh and processed foods and ingredients. In addition, he has extensive experience in developing and providing training for both regulatory and private sector personnel, both internationally and in the U.S.

Dr. Gene Bartholomew

Dr. Gene Bartholomew joined IEH as Vice President of Technical Services in 2019. He earned an M.S. and Ph.D. in microbiology from Cornell University and a B.S. in biology from Bucknell University. Dr. Bartholomew began his professional career at International Paper in 1983 as a research scientist. During his 15 years there, he commercialized and validated an aseptic packaging system, managed a beverage pilot plant and its laboratory, started taste panel testing for the company, and advanced to manage several product development groups. Dr. Bartholomew then joined Smithfield Foods Packaged Meats. He started in the John Morrell Group as the corporate director of food safety for 7 meat processing and slaughter facilities and 1 spice plant. He later took on the role of Senior Director of Corporate Food Safety, during which he was responsible for 14 meat processing plants and several FDA-regulated plants.

Throughout his 20-year career at Smithfield, he led HACCP plan design and validation, thermal processing, regulatory compliance, sanitation, allergen control and environmental pathogen monitoring. He also managed a corporate microbiology laboratory and its accreditation, and has certifications in HACCP training, BRC and SQF schemes, and is a Preventive Controls Qualified Individual. Dr. Bartholomew was a founding member of the North American Meat Institute Listeria Control Workshop and has taught numerous courses to members of the food industry.

Let's get in touch

Have questions? Our team is here to help. Also available is IEH customer service at (206)522-5432 or By filling out this information, you are adhering to our privacy policy.