Sunday, April 30, 2017

Pneumatic Actuators Designed to Handle Food Processing Wash Down

self-foaming general purpose cleaners are applied
Self-foaming, caustic cleaners are
applied to everything in the room.
Cleaning procedures in food processing plants are beyond meticulous. The have to be. The result could be the introduction of dangerous bacteria that can cause sickness, or even death. Regular, painstaking, and methodical cleaning of equipment, piping, valves, actuators, walls and floors is critical for product safety.

Many plants operate two 8-hour shifts, and reserve a third shift for a meticulous cleaning. During the cleaning shift, all equipment is locked out and tagged for safety, and then disassembled to provide access to all the small "nooks and crannies" where food and bacteria can hide. The next step involves a pre-rinse where any visible product debris is removed with hot water. Up next is the soap and scrub phase, where self-foaming general purpose cleaners are applied on all the equipment, walls, floors and drains of the production facility and then scrubbed with brushes and sponges.

It’s important to note that everything in the room is washed with these caustic and/or acidic cleaners.

The next step is typically another hot water wash-down, followed by careful visual inspections using flashlights to ensure all debris has been removed. The equipment is then re-assembled and swabbed with bioluminescence agents that glow when potential problem areas are found. Many processors go one step further and include a final step where they again flood the equipment, walls, and floor with cool water and more caustic sanitizer.

Kinetrol Blueline
Kinetrol Blueline
for foodservice
applications.
It's obvious that this process is extremely tough on equipment and machine components. Any device in this environment must withstand frequent wash downs with foaming acids, self-foaming chlorinated caustic cleaners, and sanitizers. All piping, valves and fittings are stainless steel, which provides excellent cleaniblility and withstands the harsh chemicals. For components (such as valve actuators) that are not produced in stainless steel, the Food and Drug Administration allows for the use of "Resinous and Polymeric Coatings” (properly known as 21 CFR 175.300).

Recently, Kinetrol introduced it's new “Blueline” pneumatic actuator which was tested and meets the requirements of 21 CFR 175.300. This new actuator stands up to the wash down chemicals used in plant cleaning making them available for use in areas where other pneumatic actuators are not approved, or simply can not stand up to the environment.

The Blueline Series provides food and beverage processors all the time-proven benefits of the Kinetrol PLUS provides an affordable option for tough chemical wash-down areas. For more information, visit Kinetrol USA's website or call 972-447-9443.