Pumping sauce, ketchup and mayonnaise hygienically
Hygiene is paramount in food industry applications, where any failures can have a devastating impact on brand reputation. So when a global brand sauce and condiments manufacturer in Russia wanted to replace pumps that were proving difficult to clean and maintain, hygiene was a prime consideration.
The manufacturer chose Bredel CIP (clean-in-place) pumps from Watson-Marlow Fluid Technology Group (WMFTG).
Bredel CIP 50 pumps are available with the option of externally operated retracting shoes that release the hose so that the line is open and unobstructed for cleaning. Pumps featuring this option are used at the Russian plant with a food-approved hose and food grade lubricant, both from WMFTG, while stainless steel sanitary connectors include DIN, ASA and JIS types.
Hygiene and sterility are crucial at the plant where, depending on the production plan, CIP is often scheduled daily. The process takes place at full velocity using food industry standard cleaning agents.
The pumps have been installed on two filling lines to transfer cheese sauce, which is heated to 75°C. Here, the sauce needs to be pumped quickly from the hoppers to the filling line at flow rates of up to 7000 L/h. If the sauce cools in the pump hose or in the transfer lines, it will solidify, which would cause huge cleaning issues because hot water and stronger cleaning agents would be needed to break down the starch and fats.
Elsewhere on-site, Bredel CIP pumps transfer ketchup through 20 m pipework with 7 m delivery. The pumps dose ketchup with a viscosity of 50,000 cP (at 30–40°C) from the hoppers to a line that fills plastic single-serving sachets for fast-food outlets. On the same line, plastic sachets are also filled with mayonnaise (5000 cP), again for fast-food outlets.
Aside from ease of cleaning, there were several important factors to consider before selecting the Bredel pumps, not least the shear thinning of these thixotropic sauces. Further factors included the avoidance of air entrainment, which could lead the sachets to burst on filling, and the need for sterility.
Ultimately, the gentle, low-shear capability of Bredel pumps was put forward by the contractor that supplied the Rossi and Catelli filling system. The recommendation was supported by referencing the use of Bredel pumps at other group plants outside of Russia.
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