An in-depth look at how to safely produce gluten-free products
Apr 14, 2016
Stellar recently exhibited at the American Society of Baking’s (ASB) annual BakingTech conference in Chicago. “Gluten-free” continues to be a topic on the rise among the attendees. This isn’t surprising, as more and more companies are incorporating gluten-free products into their offering arsenals. However, a common challenge for food manufacturers going gluten-free is preventing cross-contamination, whether it’s modifying existing plants or embarking on greenfield projects. Gluten-free products also require specific distribution and processing considerations that may differ from what manufacturers are used to, from mixing methods to storage. So, how do you safely integrate gluten-free manufacturing into your bakery plant?
Mar 24, 2016
Your food processing facility’s commitment to safety starts with being prepared. How do you prepared to be… prepared? With your food plant’s emergency action plan (EAP): a required Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) document that defines employer and employee actions during workplace emergencies. While emergency action plans that meet minimum requirements may include emergency information and procedures, they still may not contain enough detail to ensure the safest response to dangerous situations. Your plan must be comprehensive, eliminating all confusion and hesitancy in case of an emergency. A non-comprehensive plan — one lacking extensive instruction or failing to address each emergency — may add confusion to the situation.
Final part in our worker safety series
Nov 19, 2015
In last week’s post, I introduced you to the behavior-based approach to worker safety. While ergonomic design and regulatory compliance remain critical to worker safety, behavior-based safety strategies incentivize employees to take ownership of their own safety. Employees proactively identify potential hazards, helping prevent them from ever happening in the first place.
Below, I outline in more detail three reasons you should integrate a behavior-based approach into your food plant’s worker safety practices.
Make your 'recorded incidents per man hour' work for you
Nov 12, 2015
Worker safety is a critical element in every food plant, regardless of the type of products manufactured. And while creating a safe, ergonomic work environment is a must, sometimes it’s not enough to ensure the safety of your most important asset—your employees.
In a recent Food Engineering article on ergonomic practices, I discussed how a behavior-based approach can enhance your plant’s worker safety. With behavior-based safety training, workers are incentivized to proactively look for potential hazards, creating a safety-oriented workforce.
Aug 20, 2015
Lately, we’ve focused on refrigeration compressor packages, blogging about everything from mistakes you may be making with your daily logs to which factors you need to check regularly. This week, we provide an infographic to help you identify red flags that may signal compressor health issues.
Aug 13, 2015
Are you failing to tend to what’s right underneath your feet? Though concrete freezer floors can last up to more than half a century, the underfloor heating system beneath still requires regular preventive maintenance. If you don’t take the proper precautions, frost can form in the sub-grade soils resulting in raised, cracked floors and a host of potential problems, including: safety concerns, operational issues and significant structural damage.
Applicable to all new or significantly rebuilt / remanufactured machinery
Jun 18, 2015
Automation has gained plenty of traction in the food and beverage processing industry thanks to benefits including cost savings, labor reduction and increased food safety. However, a slew of national and international guidelines and requirements has made owning automation equipment more complex than ever before—with risk assessments an especially gray area. The good news? Clearer risk assessment requirements have arrived from the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and The American National Standards Institute (ANSI), offering more consistent expectations.
Apr 30, 2015
Refrigeration screw compressors use axial thrust load bearings—and they have a life expectancy that will begin to fail over time. At one time or another, all food processors and beverage manufacturers will be in the market for a refrigeration compressor rebuild or replacement. Because the compressor and its bearings will deteriorate over time, staying on top of its performance is crucial to avoiding a catastrophic failure. Here are three methods that can help gauge your compressor’s fitness.
Apr 16, 2015
When cooling loads change gradually, your refrigeration equipment and controls undergo gradual changes and your system remains stable and efficient. However, if rapid load fluctuations occur as a result of production or sanitation activities, many systems experience pressure or temperature fluctuations, which can cause sanitation and quality issues as well as increased energy usage. There are several strategies food manufacturers can employ to deal with these challenges.
PSM from A to Z
Feb 26, 2015
What if I told you that your facility could shorten its process safety management (PSM) audit from four days to four hours? This was a reality for a plant I audited recently—all thanks to its digital PSM program. Digital PSM programs are becoming more widely viewed as a best practice for facility owners, requiring less time and resources for auditing and documentation. In an era where we’re all short on time and resources, I’ve outlined below how a digital PSM program can save you both.