21 Nov ‘Tis the season to be vigilant on food safety
In the lead up to Christmas, Australia warms up and so does the consumer desire for a wider variety of seasonal produce. For food processors, however, summertime also brings with it the heightened risk of contamination.
Food safety is a priority for food processors and manufacturers throughout the year, but warmer climes call for businesses to be extra vigilant. More than four million Australians fall sick to food poisoning annually from consuming contaminated food1. And temperature change is one of the key causes of food poisoning as food poisoning bacteria thrive at higher temperatures and multiply faster2.
Summer is therefore a crucial time for food processors and manufacturers to audit their production processes. According to Murray Walbran, Managing Director for CRC Industries Australia, warmer temperatures leave zero margin for error when it comes to food safety.
“Industrial kitchens and food manufacturing plants are well aware of the importance of proper refrigeration, sterilising equipment, removing waste and avoiding cross contamination when it comes to preventing food poisoning,’’ Walbran said.
“It is equally as important to focus on the procedures, products and equipment used to maintain machinery in the food manufacturing and processing sectors to ensure the highest standards for reliability and safety are being met.”
The global introduction of the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) system has enabled the food industry to collectively minimise risk of food contamination. However, regular auditing is essential to maintaining good practices and compliance to food safety standards.
“At CRC we understand the food industry, whether growing, producing, processing or packaging, requires the most stringent conformity of compliance,” Walbran explained. “Well-maintained equipment is one of the golden rules to keeping safety standards high in food-processing facilities. Poorly maintained equipment, or equipment serviced with substandard maintenance products, will inevitably lead to machinery breakdowns which compromise production processes and jeopardise food safety.”
To assist food processors and manufacturers, CRC Industries have developed the Greenlight Food Safety Program, designed to reduce the risk of incidents occurring during maintenance.
According to Walbran, the Greenlight Food Safety Program can either simplify or improve on a businesses’ current Quality Assurance auditing programs through the introduction of:
- CRC’s NSF H1, NSF A1 and HACCP approved maintenance products
- Onsite central point for audit document, including SDS, TDS and allergen certificates
- A visual food safety identification program through wall and cupboard signage, poster and printed materials
- Site survey and assessment
- Ongoing updates to ensure the highest level of regulatory compliance
- Inventory assessment and management with the aim to reduce costs
Walbran also highlights the fact that food safety is a primary concern across the entire supply chain.
“Food processors and manufacturers have an obligation to keep their plants running efficiently whilst preventing contamination of their goods,” he said. “To help minimise the risk of maintenance, repair and operations (MRO) chemicals across all food processing and non-production areas, the Greenlight Food Safety Program also includes a visual identification labelling program. This ensures maintenance employees use and store MRO chemicals in the proper locations and in accordance with audit requirements.”
According to Steve Keown, CBC Australia’s National Product Manager for Lubricants, the CRC brand and product range is highly regarded within the food industry.
“Our customers know and trust the CRC brand. The company is a leader when it comes to product quality, performance and regulatory compliance. This especially rings true when it comes to food safety and the food grade range, including the innovative Greenlight Food Safety Program.”
Moreover, Walbran pointed out that CRC is an ISO certified manufacturer and certified supplier of HACCP Australia’s endorsed food safe products.
“CRC is committed to continue leading the evolution of maintenance chemicals as they relate to regulatory compliance within the food industry,” he said.
“All CRC products have been formulated to maintain food safety behind the scenes and are accepted for incidental food contact.”
CRC’s comprehensive food grade range includes water-based silicone, white grease, di-electric grease, Parcel Glide, chain lube, belt dressing, machine oil, penetrating oil, sealants, anti-seize compounds and bio degreaser cleaners.
- Australian Government, Department of Health, Food Borne Illness in Australia.
- How to avoid food poisoning, Choice magazine.