Nestlé has made a $31-million investment in the Nestlé Quality Assurance Center (NQAC) in Dublin, OH.

The center—which was designed to raise the bar for the verification of food safety and quality standards and provide support for the implementation and maintenance of food safety programs—is now the largest and most sophisticated testing facility in the Nestlé network and possibly the world.

And, the newly expanded NQAC is now the lead quality assurance center for all Nestlé businesses in the Americas. It has nearly doubled in size to 82,000 sq. ft., including an expanded 32,000-sq.-ft. microbiology lab, and completely renovated chemistry lab and associated facilities that increase capacity and efficiency, and improve safety for all products tested.

The NQAC has the ability and capacity to test virtually every Nestlé product, ingredient and manufacturing environment to verify that they conform to all applicable regulatory requirements and meet Nestlé’s high quality and safety standards. Test results from the Dublin lab are critical to the Americas and often to the entire global supply chain.

As an active supporter of the Food Safety Modernization Act, Nestlé’s investment in the NQAC will help anticipate and exceed regulators’ expectations for the verification of the quality and safety of ingredients, the verification of environmental hygiene and the assurance of finished product quality and safety. To further support food safety efforts, Nestlé is joining the Partnership for Food Safety Education this fall by supporting “The Story of Your Dinner” communication program, which is an invitation to consumers to join the fight against foodborne illness.

“At Nestlé, each and every employee is accountable for food quality and safety, and we are investing in the leading tools in the world to ensure quality that allows our millions of consumers to have confidence in our products,” says Gregory Pritchard, VP  quality management for Nestlé USA. “We aim to earn consumer trust by never compromising on quality in anything we do.”

The Dublin NQAC is staffed by more than 220 chemists, microbiologists, food scientists, quality specialists and support staff who offer specialized laboratory services, factory hygiene and food safety systems around the clock to Nestlé production facilities throughout the Americas.

“Together, the NQACs around the world perform more than 3 million analyses per year for the full range of Nestlé products,” says Aaron Ayres, head of the Americas NQAC in Dublin.

The investment in the NQAC in Dublin is another example of the company’s ongoing commitment to the state of Ohio. Nestlé employs more than 3,400 people across the state in a variety of businesses.

The newly renovated center incorporates sustainability efforts through the use of natural refrigerants, complying with many LEED requirements, featuring a variety of MERV and HEPA filtration options, using natural light throughout the facility and using rapidly renewable building materials and products.