Foreign bodies, objects, small fragments of glass, glass particles and other contaminants found in products are a serious issue at any point in the food and drink, pharmaceutical and cosmetics supply chains.

Through glass fragmentation analysis, we can identify whether the foreign glass object was introduced during the manufacturing, processing or filling stage, or potentially by the customer after purchase. And we can work with you to resolve the issue to potentially prevent it from happening again. 

Where an injury or complaint is involved, our expert witness service can provide a specialist report and testimony.

Our UKAS accredited foreign body and glass fragment analysis service is available at rapid turnaround, and results can be issued within 24 hours of receiving the sample.

To identify the likely source of a foreign body, we find evidence on objects using optical light microscopy, fractography and energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy, then analyse it on a scanning electron microscope. If a source is suspected, we undertake comparative analysis using analytical techniques including glass refractive index measurements and Fourier transform infrared spectrophotometry.

When undertaking analysis of glass fragments, we analyse surface features which identify manufacturing methods or subsequent handling, and the composition, colour, refractive index and density of the broken glass fragments. This enables us to identify, compare, confirm or rule-out potential sources of the foreign body.

We can analyse a vast range of glass foreign bodies. Typically, we are contracted to investigate or identify glass fragments or glass-like foreign bodies found within

  • food, drink, beer and spirit products
  • cosmetic, perfume and fragrance products
  • sanitary products and nappies
  • plastic fragments (not UKAS accredited)

Glass foreign body and fragment analysis leadership and expertise

We have decades of experience analysing glass foreign bodies and fragments to determine if an object was introduced during the manufacturing process or after the product was sold. Our experts can help you resolve the issue and potentially prevent it from reoccurring.

View the full leadership team
Daniel Capon

Daniel Capon

Food & Drink Lead
Daniel is a specialist in glass analysis and focuses on XRF and SEM. He has worked in the glass industry since 1999 and overseas our glass properties and environmental departments. Read More
Adam Frith

Adam Frith

Senior Technologist
Adam has over 10 years' experience in analytical techniques for glass materials and glass properties, with his main discipline focused on XRF – WD applications. Working with customers in the glass industry, or anything related with glass or process on an international scale. Read More
Graham Morris

Graham Morris

Retail & Trade Lead
Graham oversees our retail and trade offering and has worked at Glass Technology Services since 2014. He specialises in the failure analysis of glass articles from a range of sectors, utilising both optical and scanning electron microscope techniques to identify and interpret fracture markings. Read More
Claire Moir

Claire Moir

Senior Technologist
Claire has been working in the glass industry since 2016 and focuses on mechanical testing methods and failure analysis techniques for a range of different sectors. Read More

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