7 things it pays to consider when cleaning processing equipment
Every food and beverage processing plant operator wants to clean equipment as efficiently as possible. But not everyone knows these fundamental facts about cleaning processing equipment. Do you?
1. A surface can look clean without being clean.
Organic soils can be tricky to remove. Even though a piece of equipment may look clean to the naked eye, it’s not necessarily clean.
Often, traditional cleaning chemicals such as caustics and acids leave behind microscopic organic matter from soils. But out of sight should not mean out of mind! Even trace amounts of residual soil can lead to big, costly problems.
2. Traditional chemistry cannot remove all organic soils.
Because traditional chemistry provides a generalized clean rather than a component-specific, targeted clean, it is not capable of fully removing complex organic soils.
Nor is traditional chemistry flexible enough to tackle different soil complexities across different types of processing plants. Yes, chemicals can clean. But they can’t always ensure the most efficient clean.
3. When a surface isn’t completely clean, fresh soils can more easily attach and accumulate on equipment.
Nearly all areas of a processing plant are prone to fouling and soil build-up. These soils may be due to residual process substrates or films that form over time.
Residual soil – whether visible or not – acts as a “glue” that attracts fresh soils.
Failure to thoroughly clean tanks, pipes, heat exchanges, membranes and more increases a plant’s risks. These risks include ineffective sanitization/disinfection, unplanned downtime, lower capacity, and lower product quality.
4. Even the toughest plant equipment can be harmed by harsh cleaning solutions.
Over time, corrosive cleaning chemistries can damage plant infrastructure.
According to NACE International, the world’s leading corrosion control organization, the direct cost of corrosion in the food industry is an estimated USD 2.1 billion every year – and that’s just in the U.S. Globally, the costs of corrosion in various industries, including food, is an estimated USD 2.5 trillion.
Enzyme-based cleaning solutions can be formulated to thoroughly clean at a neutral pH, preventing potential damage to equipment.
5. Organic soils are often made up of different components.
Organic soils usually comprise a variety of components. The composition of these soils varies by processing industry.
In a brewery, for example, you’d expect to find carbohydrate-rich soils. In a dairy, on the other hand, residual proteins and fats would be the most likely soils.
Each of these organic soils contains complex biological components. And each must be targeted to be fully removed.
6. Plant efficiency can improve by cleaning with enzymes
Sanitization/Disinfection is only as effective as your cleaning step – if your equipment isn’t clean, it can’t be sanitized/disinfected.
Enzymes target the specific components that make up complex organic soils and quickly break them down into smaller pieces. This makes it easier for the surfactants in an enzymatic cleaning solution to do their job. The result is a true clean – the first time.
With enzymes, passing quality metrics is easy. Because no one wants to fail quality control and clean again. Enzymatic cleaning can also improve operational efficiencies, by minimizing downtime and improving product quality.
7. You can improve your sustainability and safety profile by using enzymatic cleaning solutions.
Efficient cleaning can translate into less cleaning – which means less water usage.
Furthermore, enzymes, which target specific soils, can clean at lower temperatures than traditional chemistry. This minimizes energy use while enabling full removal of complex organic soils.
The potential for water and energy savings isn’t the only sustainability benefit of enzymes. Traditional chemistries, even in diluted form, can negatively impact waste streams if not treated properly prior to disposal. Enzymes, on the other hand, are 100% biodegradable and will not impact waste streams.
Because enzymes are a safer cleaning chemistry than traditional solutions, they are also a way to further minimize hazards at safety-conscious facilities.
See how your business can benefit
If you’d like to explore the ways your business can benefit with an enzymatic cleaning solution for processing equipment, contact our experts. We’re happy to answer your questions and explore your opportunities – no strings attached of course.