Protecting The Most Vulnerable With Hygienic Inspection Systems
The sanitary design of all processing and production equipment is critical to minimize the growth and spread of biological contamination within manufacturing facilities. This is paramount for those dealing with dairy or meat based ingredients in baby food. As a critical defender of quality assurance, product inspection equipment must also withstand, and not harbour, all forms of contamination.
It is vital that baby food and infant formula manufacturers ensure that the risk of bacterial contamination is kept to an absolute minimum to safeguard sensitive infants against potentially harmful products. This can only be achieved by integrating hygienically-designed equipment into processing and packing lines. In doing so, operational uptime is enhanced, life expectancy of the equipment is extended, and maintenance costs are reduced.
Five hygiene considerations to think about when purchasing Product Inspection Equipment
Degrees of Ingress Protection
This internationally recognised scale indicates proven ‘protection of electric enclosures of appliances, machines and installation materials’ against ‘penetration of solids and liquids’. The first number refers to the amount of protection an enclosure has against solid matter, such as dust particles, while the second number defines the level of protection against liquids. IP69 is the highest protection rating available.
Metal detection, x-ray and checkweighing systems are available which fulfil international sanitary design guidelines and with IP65 sealing as standard. Optional IP69 sealing is available for many models.
All materials should be compatible with the product, environment, cleaning and sanitising chemicals, as well as the cleaning methods used. Product contact surfaces must be corrosion resistant, non-toxic and non-absorbent. Plated, painted and coated surfaces should not be used for food contact surfaces or for surfaces above product zone areas. Product inspection systems are constructed with corrosion resistant, stainless steel materials. When considering which conveyor to purchase, manufacturers should select belt equipment designed with plastic-coated materials as they do not absorb moisture or harbour microorganism growth.
All equipment should be readily accessible for inspection, maintenance, cleaning and sanitisation without the use of tools. Increased accessibility for cleaning helps to reduce operational downtime.
Hollow areas of equipment, such as frames and rollers, should be eliminated or permanently sealed. All items must be welded to the surface of the equipment, not attached via drilled and tapped holes to avoid bacteria to form in catchment areas.
Maintenance enclosures and human machine interfaces (HMIs), should ensure that product residue or water does not penetrate or accumulate in or on the enclosure. They should be IP rated and suitable for exposure to water and chemicals used in cleaning and sanitization.
There is an abundance of sanitary standards that baby food and infant formula manufacturers must adhere with to facilitate trade in certain markets. Our hygienically-designed product inspection systems are a vital step forward to achieving compliance.
For information about how to ensure conforming baby food and infant formula products reach the retail marketplace, download our FREE white paper: Food Safety: Packaged Baby Food & Infant Formula.Leave a reply →