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Processing e-News / Food & Beverage

Automation key for ensuring food safety, equipment manufacturer claims

February 26, 2013
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The U.S. food processing industry has always placed a lot of emphasis on safety but this focus has never been of such a paramount importance as it is now. With proposed new stringent controls and tight regulations, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) aims to ensure that food products reaching consumers are as safe as possible.

The anticipated reforms mean that food processing plants are likely to face serious challenges in complying with the new regulations. One of the key elements to make sure products are safe is prevention of potential bacterial contamination. Iowa-based Carometec Food Technology offers a solution to food processing facilities that are looking to improve existing sanitary procedures and minimize the risk of food-borne illnesses.

According to Carometec, one of the most important aspects of food processing plant hygiene is employee compliance with safety rules. In processing facilities, typically there are separated areas where various stages of the process take place. Some of them are considered high-risk areas and employees should be particularly careful when operating in those areas. However, there are cases when employees fail to see the importance of doing this and can involuntarily spread bacteria around the facility through their dirty hands or boots, thus causing outbreaks of diseases. In order to prevent this, facilities should be equipped with the best possible sanitation technology that is based on automation.

RELATED: Food processing companies face stricter regulations under Food Safey Modernization Act

Carometec aims to facilitate this and has developed machinery that can be used to sanitize the floor of processing plants or harvesting buildings, as well as prep areas where ready-to-eat products are processed. Carometec specializes in manufacturing various types of low-maintenance and high-quality bacteria-fighting equipment that can assist with food safety in food handling environments. The company provides hygiene solutions in the form of a range of automated systems that can cut costs, save time and improve quality. Carometec offers equipment from space-saving models to fully automated systems that streamline processes and facilitate employee compliance. Depending on the risk-assessment, many systems even ban access to the area before the whole process has been completed.

Jeb Supple of Carometec claimed that the walk-thru systems provided by the company to various food processing plants ensure that the facilities remain efficient while at the same time guaranteeing the best possible prevention of food-borne illnesses. Carometec also offers sole washers, which are especially popular among clients. Supple explained that the equipment is fully automatic and is based on sensors that trigger a jet of water and sanitizing product, which can be adjusted according to a company's specific needs. Boot washers and sole washer sanitation equipment have proved to be extremely effective in sanitation, he added.

The equipment functions in similar way to hand washing/sanitizing systems and its success is mostly due to the fact that automation is the best approach towards achieving compliance with regulations and consumer protection, Supple concluded.

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