The Food Manufacturing Brainstorm features industry experts sharing their perspectives on issues critical to the overall food industry marketplace. In this issue, we ask:
What safety factors should food manufacturers
consider when implementing filtration systems
in their facilities?
Eliminating the risk of product contamination
ensures the safety of the consumer. Because
compressed air is used in many food manufacturing processes where the air comes in direct contact with the product, such as ingredient mixing
and pneumatic conveyance, completely eliminating the risk of oil contamination through use of oil-free air compressors is the best solution for protecting the consumer. An alternate solution is the
use of oil-injected compressors plus multi-stage
compressed air filters, which lowers the oil content
considerably, though not completely.
Oil-free air compressors that meet ISO 8573-
1 Class 0 standards for air quality are the best
choice for food manufacturers producing goods
that come into direct contact with compressed air.
With a Class 0 certified oil-free air compressor,
the risk of oil contamination is virtually eliminated
along with the need for costly filter replacements
and ongoing maintenance to remove oil residue,
resulting in a lower lifecycle cost of ownership
than a comparably sized oil-injected compressor.
While the oil-free solution requires higher initial
capital, it comes with lower risk and maintenance
costs than the compressed air filter solution.
However, if a food manufacturer’s compressed
air system already includes oil-injected compressors, the second best air treatment option is multi-stage filtration. Filter designs that feature micro-glass fiber filter media and multi-layer wrapped
construction ensure the highest purity filtration
and guarantee consistent performance over the
filter lifetime. This type of filter design results in
increased energy efficiency through decreased
system pressure drops and is also fully certified
according to ISO standards.
The quality of the end product is paramount to
food manufacturers and even a trace of oil con-
tamination can lead to downtime, costly
recalls and a ruined reputation.
Therefore, to ensure the safety of
the consumer through the highest
quality products, food manufacturers should look at ways to implement oil-free air compressors
that meet ISO 8573-1 Class 0
standards for air quality.