Stay ahead of food safety audits
By Painters USA Team
— Published March 11, 2022
Causing or contributing to a food safety issue is the worst nightmare of any facility or operational manager in the food and beverage processing industry.
From ceilings to floors, all surfaces in food processing facilities must be properly maintained to comply with applicable regulations for food safety, which means keeping the facility protected against hazards in three categories:
- Biological hazards such as bacteria, parasites, fungi and viruses that can develop through a number of ways.
- Chemical hazards like pesticides or machine oils, which may be present at every stage of food handling.
- Physical hazards such as foreign contaminants like pieces of glass, metal, debris, insects.
Common non-conformities and violations
According to Safe Food Alliance, the most common SQF non-conformities include such items as:
- Environmental monitoring
- Cleaning and sanitation
- Foreign material control
- Pest activity risk
And according to Food Safety Magazine, the top building and equipment maintenance violations cited every year include:
- Failure to maintain buildings and fixtures in a sufficient manner.
- Lack of proper cleaning and maintenance, often due to features that limit proper cleaning of floors, walls, and ceilings.
- Dripping and condensate hazards.
- Improper storage of items like toxic cleaning compounds and finished products.
Getting floor work done in food facilities
Companies in the food industry face demands and expectations that other industries don’t have to manage, as food safety is highly regulated and monitored. This short video (two minutes) features Painters USA floor representative Tom Mickey talking about important flooring considerations for the food industry.
Unique environmental aspects of food industry facilities
Environmental factors like temperature and relative humidity have a significant impact on the effectiveness and longevity of flooring in food and beverage processing and food service facilities.
- Relative humidity and ambient air temperature: managing temperature and relative humidity is necessary to limit microbial persistence in food manufacturing environments.
- Presence of carbon dioxide: CO2 is used in a variety of ways in food and beverage processing, and a variety of forms, from dry ice to liquid carbon dioxide, in processes like the bottling / canning of carbonated beverages, flash-freezing foods, and maintaining consistent cold temperatures in refrigerated warehouses.
- Water vapor and other water / liquid issues: even small pools of liquid can quickly become breeding grounds for microbes, mold, and other food safety risks, which is why we will pay close attention to details like drains, how level and even the floor is, and minor cracks and crevices.
Food-safe flooring requires specialized skills and experience, which is why we recommend you look for a flooring contractor with proven food industry experience, like Painters USA, that understands the requirements and common concerns of the food industry.
Ready to discuss your food facility needs?
Why not contact us today to:
- Ask any questions or share your food safety concerns.
- Hear about food industry projects we’ve completed that are similar to yours.
- Schedule a walk-through of your food facility.
- Get an estimate for any pending project.