Stainless Steel Conveyors For Food Processing
Working in the food handling business is a very demanding industry. Guided by codes, regulations, and best practices to ensure our food is safe to eat, great care must be taken when preparing and shipping products. And the food needs to taste good, too! Although taste is a major component of the food we eat, we’d also prefer not to be poisoned while eating it. When dealing with produce, raw meat, and other perishable foods, it’s important to keep those food processing conveyor belts as clean as possible. Conveyors systems made with stainless steel construction are winners on two fronts.
Easy to Keep Clean
Stainless steel is impervious, which means that it will repel bacteria and keep our food safer than plastic or rubber food grade conveyors. Plastic or rubber can chip, crack, or become frayed after long-time use. Those fissures give bacteria just the foothold they need to affect the cleanliness of meat, poultry, and seafood.
Those imperfections also make it harder to clean the conveying system. If they become too damaged, they may need to be replaced to ensure the handling process remains sanitary enough to meet product handling regulations. Endless stainless steel belts have a smooth surface that is easy to clean.
Stainless steel is also much more durable than the other products, so food processors aren’t constantly replacing parts. The food processing industry depends on fast, efficient, and sanitary conveyors. With less downtime cleaning and more time moving food products down the line, steel conveyor belts check all three boxes.
A Matter Of Taste
Even without being “foodies,” we know when food tastes or smells a little off. Good seafood doesn’t smell fishy and fresh produce doesn’t smell funky. Most of the time this happens when the food gets home and is stashed at the back of a freezer or vegetable crisper drawer.
Food processing conveyors are designed to keep fresh food moving and avoid developing any of those unappealing characteristics. However, conveyor belts themselves can be the cause of those imperfections. Plastic chains and rubber or plastic belts are guilty of “outgassing.” This means they emit a gas that can alter the way the food tastes or even looks.
That just isn’t the case with stainless steel. It doesn’t outgas and rarely cracks or frays, which means unwanted particles aren’t discovered in the food down the line. And although most sanitary food complaints come from raw foods, the durability of stainless steel is also the best way to cook, bake, or freeze mass-produce foods.
Piping Hot of Frozen Solid
Stainless steel food handling applications are the only choices when the foods being processed need to be cooked or frozen anywhere along the line. Unlike plastic, rubber, or cloth, stainless steel can go from hundreds of degrees to freezing without feeling the effects. Other materials will degrade over time, which affects the taste of the food.
Many prepackaged foods are first cooked, then frozen, before being packaged and shipped around the nation. You can imagine how much time is saved when using a single conveyor system as opposed to transferring a product between multiple conveyor systems. Conveyor systems also provide efficiencies that have nothing to do with food handling.
Take Advantage of Your Space
Food processing plants, industrial facilities, and warehouses all have one thing in common: Big Spaces. This is for a variety of reasons, including ventilation, large machinery, or storage uses. Conveyors systems can take advantage of the unused overhead space to make the building more productive.
Forklifts have to avoid tight spaces, operators need to be careful around other workers, and can be cumbersome to operate. Pallet jacks, pallet trucks, or jiggers work in some cases but need operators in most cases. A well-designed conveyor system needs less room, doesn’t depend on human interaction, and can run all day long.
With crew members loading products at one end and offloading at the other, none of the other plant operations are impeded. Conveyor systems can be designed to deliver products to cold storage or directly to the shipping trucks. In many cases, these systems are also made with catwalks to allow for repair, service, and maintenance.
More Than 50 Years of Conveyor Experience
Storee Construction has been designing, building, and installing stainless steel conveyor systems throughout the midwest since 1966. We understand the importance of being able to keep the food handling process sanitary as well as expedient. We’ll make the best of use of your space to ensure food stays as fresh as possible.
In addition to conveyor systems, Storee Construction also provides industrial and commercial build services, plant relocations, safety upgrades and more for other facilities as well. If you need to add additional square footage, or need to overhaul your entire electrical grid, reach out to us. We’ll work together to see how Storee Construction can help.