CIP tank systems require appropriate applications
Sep 1, 2008 12:00 PM
Clean-In-Place (CIP) systems need to be tailored to the tank trailers they are cleaning, said Gabe Miller of Sani-Matic Inc at the April 20-22 meeting of the International Milk Haulers Association (IMHA).
Neil Kucker of Ecolab Systems noted that CIP systems are designed to protect the safety of foods and should clean, not just circulates water. Critical steps in the cleaning process should include manual preparation of domelids, pumps, valves, and gaskets.
In Canada, the Dairy Farms of Ontario (DFO) are taking a hard look at tank trailers and tank trucks to be sure the proper tank cleaning procedures are being followed, said Bill Pepper of DFO.
All three speakers emphasized the importance of maintaining cleaning equipment to ensure it meets design specifications.
Pepper pointed out that in Canada the industry requires post-cleaning inspections to include all surfaces that come in contact with milk, including testing equipment.
Miller said that cargo tanks are being constructed with larger capacities and the designs are different. “There is no one way (to clean) that is best for tankers because they have different configurations,” he said. “You can't just drive into a bay and think you will get the same results.”
CIP systems must be installed properly to insure their effectiveness, he added. Pumps should supply adequate pressure for the size of the tank, wash bay floors should be pitched so that water drains efficiently from the tank, and equipment should be properly maintained.
“There is no magic to this,” Miller said. “It's following some basic rules that go back a long way. The most important component is the operator.”
Kucker said that flow, pressure monitoring, conductivity to control concentration, and temperature all should be recorded during the process. Hydraulics should be set so that the flow and return are appropriate for the cleaning required. Always check spray devices that are rotated by water pressure to be sure they aren't stopped up. Tanks should be inspected after cleaning, using a bright light that exposes all parts of the interior.
In Ontario, all milk haulers have CIP systems in their cargo tanks. It's not unusual to find foreign materials in the balls, such as stones and pieces of metal and plastic, Pepper said.
Pepper also noted that the exterior cleanliness of the tank is important in order to portray a pristine image for foodgrade products.
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