Tony Reed, Business Development Manager for Food Safety, Dow Microbial Control
In an industry where sanitization is measured by the health of our customers, there’s no such thing as being too safe. Even after taking
all the standard precautions, food and beverage manufacturers continue to explore innovative and sustainable methods for maintaining a
One solution that food safety professionals have turned to for over 100 years is ozone. While there’s nothing
new about ozone-based sanitation — it’s helped disinfect drinking water since 1893 — recent innovations that
distribute ozone as a vapor using automated controls have made it far more reliable than in the past, particularly
for whole-room sanitization. Prior ozone delivery techniques faced difficulties such as inconsistent application
in certain environments, whereas automated advanced oxidation ozone technology for whole-room sanitization
delivers consistent results, even in the most challenging environments.
Advanced oxidation whole room ozone sanitization penetrates a space completely — infiltrating even diffi-cult-to-reach areas such as drains, fabrics and hidden spaces in equipment.
Conventional sanitization methods, though effective against contamination in most facilities, can encounter
challenges in certain manufacturing sites that may not have been designed according to the latest “best practices” in hygiene standards. In these situations, whole-room ozone sanitization provides additional control of harmful
pathogens, such as Listeria monocytogenes, E. coli and Salmonella.
Contaminates in any part of a food manufacturing facility put customers’ health in jeopardy and can lead to a
product recall, a costly endeavor that hinders brand trust and bears serious financial consequences. To comply
with current industry regulations and standards, food processors must demonstrate a comprehensive safety plan that accounts for all of the
risk and variables at play.
When used in conjunction with traditional cleaning and sanitization methods, whole-room ozone sanitization answers this need, providing
food manufactures with an extra layer of defense against contamination.
Though pathogen control will always remain a concern, safety innovations such as advanced oxidation whole-room ozone sanitization
help food manufacturing professionals provide food that is safe and of the highest quality. ◆
Andrew Knowles, Sales Support/Applications Manager, JBT FoodTech
For any company processing food with linear tunnels or spiral freezers, coolers, dryers, proofers or steamers,
one of the most radical innovations in sanitary design has been the “High Hygiene” coil (or heat exchanger).
The High Hygiene (HH) coil eliminates all overlapping surfaces (joints/collars) and crevices in the coil/heat
exchanger portion of freezers, coolers, dryers, proofers and steamers.
With respect to tunnels and spirals, the HH coil is perhaps the single-largest leap a food processor can make
in moving equipment toward compliance with the most recent FSMA, AMI, USDA and 3A standards. Standard
evaporator coils are generally the dirtiest component in any freezer, cooler, dryer, proofer or steamer system
(meaning it accounts for the most bacterial harborage points). Unlike the HH coil, most evaporator coils (or heat
exchangers) are manufactured by expanding a tube into a fin, which creates an overlapping surface (a collar)
and a circular crevice (nook) around this interface (regardless of the coil material) – an inaccessible safe haven
With regard to spiral freezers and coolers, a typical single-spiral cooler or freezer uses a heat exchanger
that has 4,100-71,000 sq. ft. of total cooling surface area. Standard coils/heat exchangers this large have about 410-7,100 sq. ft. (roughly
10 percent of the total cooling surface area) of overlapping collars, which are impossible to clean and inspect. For an average coil, that is
more than 3,700 sq. ft. of overlapping joints, which is more overlapping surface area than a tennis court. Even more alarming is that these
same coils and heat exchangers generate 29,520-511,200 linear feet of crevice length (or harborage channels). What makes this so dangerous in terms of food safety is that coils are constructed in a dense “bundle” so they are generally manufactured 6-24 rows deep, which
makes swabbing, inspecting and cleaning them incredibly difficult.
The design intent for any proofer, cooler, freezer, steamer or dryer using a finned heat exchanger is to move (force) all of the air through
the heat exchanger. Therefore, it’s crucial to ensure that the object the air contacts (prior to contacting the naked food product) is the clean-
est component in the system, not the dirtiest. In contrast, a food processor using a tunnel or spiral with a High Hygiene coil bodes well for
boosting consumer confidence. ◆
■ September 2014