Craft Brewer Sterile Filling for Can and Bottle PackagingHot
The recommended minimal standards when operating an IDD ‘PurePass’ Flash Pasteurization Systems are outlined below. They are intended as a guide and in no way over‐ride or supplant EPA, FDA and HACCP standards required by law where applicable.
The process and packaging of product can be broken down into the following areas:
- Product – Beer
- Product preparation – batching, blending, carbonating equipment
- Package materials in contact with the product (i.e. bottles, cans, crowns, lids and caps)
- Product ‘Flash Pasteurization’
- Package handling and filling equipment
- Product preparation and packaging areas
- Personnel and personal hygiene
1. PRODUCT used in the final product must be maintained in a clean and sanitary environment to prevent microbial growth in the product. Additives, etc. should be in a dry, cool area and liquids in a cold room at <38°F/3.5°C to prevent mold, fungal and bacterial growth. Frozen concentrates should be thawed at low temperature in the cold room to prevent further microbial growth during the thawing process.
2. PRODUCT PREPARATION in the form of batching, blending, carbonating and short term storage is carried out in purpose built closed, stainless steel vessels, pipework and blending systems that have a dedicated Cleaning‐in‐Place (CIP) and Sanitizing‐in‐Place (SIP) system for cleaning and sanitizing of all raw product contact parts.
3. PACKAGE MATERIALS such as glass bottles, crowns, cans and lids must be suitable for the product being packaged. The bottle crown or can lid should be as small as marketing will allow, have a suitable O2 barrier seal and scavenger.
4. PRODUCT ‘FLASH PASTEURIZATION’ at 71.5 degrees C for 20 seconds (15 Pasteurization Units) with a variable range from 5 to 25 Pasteurization Units (PU’s) is necessary to reduce yeast and bacteria load by a factor of 3 to 6 log. It should be noted that hard mold and bacterium spores will not be reduced or eliminated at these temperatures. The IDD ‘PurePass’ system minimizes heat exposure with a product Delta T of 4 degrees C between product and heating media throughout the process and will recover 92% of the heat to eliminate heat degradation of the product, improve the systems energy efficiency and enable a low temperature filling into a suitable package. The ‘PurePass’ system must include a suitable CIP/SIP system to ensure that all product contact parts of the ‘PurePass’ system and downstream filler are cleaned and sanitized prior to production.
5. PACKAGE HANDLING & FILLING EQUIPMENT is specifically designed and engineered to achieve a microbially free fill in a controlled environment. From the time the bottles, cans, crowns and lids are fed into the packaging line they must be thoroughly sanitized and maintained as such until filled and sealed. This requires a special hard surface and direct food contact sanitizer such as Oxine and an activation and distribution system to sanitize the bottles, cans, crowns and lids with rinsers, spray, misting and fogging systems that are set up to continually sanitize all product contact parts during the filling and sealing process and within a confined area that ideally has a positive sterile filtered air environment local to the filler.
6. PRODUCT PREPARATION & PACKAGING AREAS must comply with the latest HACCP regulations and include (but not be limited to) good floor drainage, sealed floor and wall finishes, positive clean filtered air supply into the area, limited screened access doors. The area must have limited employee access and be kept dust free. Wash down and sanitizing facilities must be available for the washing and sanitizing of walls, floor and machinery within the area on a daily basis. Only essential materials and suitable handling equipment should be allowed in the production area.
7. PERSONNEL & PERSONAL HYGIENE is of paramount importance to a successful operation.
Training of maintenance and operations personnel must include (but not be limited to):
- Recommended supplier maintenance and operating procedures are practiced.
- Maintenance and operating practices that ensure maintained equipment is cleaned and sanitize prior to production.
- Appropriate clothing and head covering to prevent foreign objects from entering the product.
- Loose items such as jewelry etc. should be removed.
- Appropriate bathroom cleanliness and practices.
- Use of latex gloves and hand sanitizing solutions when entering the production area
- Use of footbaths when entering the production area.