MATIS is a research institution established after merging three public research institutes in 2006. Its role is to increase the value, quality and safety of all food products through research and development and to promote innovation and development in the Icelandic food industry. MATIS' function is also to conduct tests, provide consultancy and disseminate information to the government, interested parties in the food sector and consumers. MATIS' specialised fields include processing technology, biotechnology, aquaculture chemical and physical properties of food, quality and safety of food products. The aim of the Department of Environment and Quality is to increase the quality and safety by looking into the interaction between environmental factors and fish products. Department of Consumers and Safety also aims at increasing quality and safety but with emphasis on shelf life, eating quality and microbial spoilage. It also works with pathogenic microbes as well as process microbiology to control undesirable microbes and the use of molecular biology methods to trace the origin of microbes. Department of Processing and Development works with new and traditional products, emphasising biotechnology, improved yield and added value of fish products in close collaboration with the fisheries sector.