The information collected in a stability study is entirely different from that received shelf life experiment.
Differentiating between them is essential. Even though it seems to deal with similar topics, their particular goals are not the same, and the tools used to analyze the data have nothing in common.
- Shelf-life testing – the failure time of a food product is of primary interest. Failure time is neither an instrumental nor a sensory measurement. Censored failure times can occur.
- Stability Testing – the growth or the degradation of a characteristic over time is of primary concern. Failure time is not directly observable. The data must have the relevant cutoff values.
The practically stability study is the preliminary step of the survey to get the tentative idea of shelf life.