In their quest to continuously improve sanitary production “best practices”, food processors are turning to conveyors and equipment engineered to allow for fast, yet comprehensive, visual inspections and efficient sanitation wash-downs. To this end, conveyors and equipment hygienically designed with an open architecture, no flat horizontal surfaces, and devoid of bacteria-harboring hollow areas continue to gain acceptance and grow in demand.
Minimize Open Tube
Conveyors manufactured from tubular frames with plastic-capped ends or threaded plastic inserts are notorious for collecting processing and sanitation fluids and harboring the growth of spoilage organisms. When used to process sanitation-critical products such as animal proteins, dairy, and raw, ready-to-eat foods such as fruits and salads, the probability of pathogen contamination rises to unacceptable levels.
Substituting angle steel profiles for open tubes or, where unavoidable, using fully-welded and sealed tubes results in easier-to-clean, more sanitary equipment framework.
Minimize Inside Threads
By minimizing the amount of threaded holes and penetrations a structure has, the chance for microbial growth can be reduced, making for a more sanitary structure overall.
The use of welded cross-members, male-threaded stand-offs, and fastener-free solid UHMW carry ways in the product zones of a conveyor further decreases the risk posed by harborage points.
No Liquid Collection
Water and processing fluids can easily pool on the flat surfaces of a structure. To prevent this, the horizontal cross members of a conveyor can be rotated by 45 degrees. This will allow any liquid to easily flow off of the framework and eliminate a potential growth point for microorganisms. Where self-draining surfaces are not feasible, a notch should be added to ensure proper drainage.
No Gaps, Crevices, or Niches
To keep product and bacteria from penetrating hard-to-reach places through gaps, crevices, or niches, welded offset plates eliminate large joined flat surfaces and allow access for thorough sanitation. The finishing quality of the structure is also important. Continuous (non-pitted) seamless welds, media-blast finish, or #4 polished finish, minimizes pores, contours and recesses where bacteria can grow.
At Eaglestone, we stay ahead of the curve on all the latest trends in sanitation to keep your line ultra-clean and ready for food production. If you have any additional questions regarding sanitary equipment design, please contact us today.