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Let’s continue off with my laboratory journeys since I only have 2 more labs left to show. So next on the labs that I’ve entered would be on the local food and drug administration. I honestly thought I wouldn’t even make it in since I applied really late there. I’m just happy that I was pretty persistent in following up with them, else I probably wouldn’t have managed to get in and experience their extremely awesome and organized laboratory.
So back when I was doing my internship there, I was deported to the food section. You see, FDA has 5 major testing priorities, namely being Drugs, Microbes/infestations, Medical equipment, containers/toxicology, cosmetics, and of course, food! I was happy to have been assigned to the food section there because I never went hungry there 🤣🤣🤣🤣The first thing my supervisors taught me there was actually how to sneak food into their lab gowns so we could eat it in the pantry. Sometimes we ate the food samples in the lab while sampling but sneaking them into the pantry was the best part.
I think I was pretty lucky when I was assigned to my laboratory because, in those times, I and my fellow interns were assigned to the fake vinegar incident. (yes, there is fake vinegar that was made from petroleum gas byproducts, then those would just be oxidized so that they would become acetic acid. It’s disgusting when you think about it but maybe I’ll write about that on another day)
I remember testing all those vinegar samples and more XD
for almost 2 weeks, I always came home smelling like vinegar
I also had to do the testing for the lambanog poisoning incident, there was also benzene poisoning in some juice brands, nitrate overusing in some processed meat products.
This was all the dissolutioned meat products we needed to filter off since meat fats
and a few other solid contaminants could cause a big problem for us when we check the
niytrate contents of those samples
I think we had to analyze processed meat for a week as well. No other samples besides
these ones came in
then fortifications law adherence on some products. I think we also tested the histamine poisoning that happened in the year 2019. Also, the Borax incidents and I had to test a lot of candies in my stay there.
These were some of the candy samples we had. You see, these candies are checked for
sugar contents and the candy color component used. We extract the color through acid
dyeing then base bleaching. The concentrated color is then spotted on a strip of filter
paper then we leave them in an incubation chamber for almos a whole day
You can see that the colors separate to the basic colors of RGB and that's what we have
to check on their ingredients list. If the color is not listed, the company receives a
warning or if the color is banned here, the candy gets pulled out of the market
this method also applies to spices, to see which brands are real spices and which have
food colorants mixed in it
It was an awesome experience! Made me very wary of what products I used at home but it was still an awesome experience!
What was more amazing was that the types of analysis they did in the lab was mostly traditional analysis like titrations, gravimetry, and the likes. It really made me acknowledge the fact that whatever experiments we were doing in the lab really had practical applications in the industry. It was really an eye-opener. And I really stepped up my studying game then despite always being tired from running around the laboratory. I also had to study hard because my fellow interns asked me to help them review for the chemical technician board exam. I didn’t mind since they shared their food with me all the time during lunch and I did the same UwU
This is one of their most interesting equipment there. This is basically a mini fume
hood specifically designed for the hydrolysis of protein products. This equipment is
only ever used for protein analysis (kjeldal method) And the color change in this kind
of titration is cool because it starts with blue, then green then a light violet and I
think it's the prettiest end point next to the vitamin C end point because that has a
really pretty pink color when you're done
Anyways, I didn’t really get to do that much instrumental analysis because I needed permission from the section head. I couldn’t get that because she was always in meetings but when she was there, she always gave me sweets because she thought I was too thin and that I needed some fats in me 😅😅😅 I loved her tho OwO and all my other supervisors because they answered all my questions and allowed me to do the analysis on my own after a month of training. I was their most asked intern during my stay there because of how fast I picked up the procedures and with how good the results I got were
Ahh, there were more stories I could write bout my 4 months stay here but I’ll tell them in fragments relevant to some science article I’ll be writing in the future. This is all from me today!