7 PSM Audit Violations and How to Avoid Them

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Quality assurance is one key to a successful food safety audit

Quality assurance is one key to a successful food safety audit

 

Process Safety Management (PSM) compliance audits are specific and comprehensive, focusing on 14 elements of OSHA’s PSM Standards. A well-planned and organized audit process — including cross-trained personnel, audit checklists and self-audits — can help ensure a successful outcome.

 

6 Ways to Optimize Your Refrigeration Efficiency and Lower Energy Costs

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Did you know that up to 60 percent of a manufacturing facility’s total operating expenses comes from industrial refrigeration? It’s no surprise that refrigeration efficiency is a priority.

However, engineers often look to optimize individual components rather than taking a holistic approach, leading to wasted energy and operational inefficiencies. To avoid this fragmented approach, here are six steps to optimize the entire system and achieve the greatest energy efficiency:

 

4 Major Decisions That Impact the Design of Your Facility

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Before a facility can become operational, there is much to consider including planning and design, government regulations and the overall goals a plant owner has. Let’s look at four major decisions that should be considered when the process begins.

 

5 Ways to Improve Equipment Reliability and Avoid Downtime in Your Food Processing Plant

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Reliability

There is one thing that food processing plants cannot afford: downtime as a result of equipment failure. The loss of a single piece of equipment can halt production and lead to product loss, not to mention a loss of revenue.

Some studies have shown that downtime for a typical food packaging line can result in $15,000 per hour of lost revenue. That’s $250 per minute!

 

CO2 Refrigeration: Debunking 3 Common Myths

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Stellar is gearing up for ATMOsphere America 2017, the leading forum for discussion about the business case for natural refrigerants in North America. The three-day conference next month will host more than 400 industry stakeholders in San Diego, California, and will feature discussions about the latest in refrigeration technology and regulation. Among the hot-button issues in the industry: the diminishing role of hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCS).

 

15 Common Ammonia Safety Issues Your Refrigeration Personnel Can Control (And Correct)

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15 Common Ammonia Safety Issues Your Refrigeration Personnel Can Control (And Correct)

More changes are coming to the food and beverage industry as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) continues to crack down on ammonia safety.

The EPA has launched a three-year, nationwide enforcement and compliance initiative focused on reducing the risks of chemical releases from facilities that use extremely hazardous chemicals, including those that use ammonia as a refrigerant.

 

5 Types of Low-charge Refrigeration Systems

Packaged refrigeration equipment series

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5 Types of Low-charge Refrigeration Systems

After months of discussions and hours of negotiations, nearly 200 nations have now reached a deal to limit the use of greenhouse gases worldwide. In October, world leaders agreed to the deal that would gradually phase out the use of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) starting in 2019.

 

6 Essential Qualities to Look for in a Strategic Planning Consultant

Strategic planning for food processors series

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6 Essential Qualities to Look for in a Strategic Planning Consultant

A strategic plan is a roadmap that defines the future of your business. That roadmap is crucial to your company’s success down the road, but creating one is a heavy undertaking. Food processors are already pressed for time with day-to-day tasks, and dedicating time and resources to plan for the future may not be feasible.

 

Strategic Planning for Food Processors: 4 Elements Your Business Plan Must Address

Questions to answer when building your business plan

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Strategic Planning for Food Processors: 4 Elements Your Business Plan Must Address

Does your food processing company have a strategic plan? Failing to plan is planning to fail—especially when it comes to your business. Earlier this year, Stellar hosted the Food Engineering webinar, 3 Key Elements in a Successful Strategic Plan for Growth. That webinar is now available on-demand, so you can still catch up on our discussion about how strategic planning can benefit food manufacturing plants, and how you can get started with developing your own strategic plan.

 

Food Plant Emergency Response: Preparing for a Hurricane

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Food Plant Emergency Response: Preparing for a Hurricane

Hurricane Matthew approaching the Florida coast in October 2016. (Source: NOAA)

 

November marks the beginning of the end for the Atlantic hurricane season. The season officially runs from June 1 through November 30, and the East Coast has seen several major storms in 2016.