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Position of EFKs (Electric Fly Killers)


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#1 D-D

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 02:23 PM

This one is a bit of a detail but is there any guidance on the correct position of EFK units?
We have some that need to be relocated (they are currently on walls above mixing vessels) but I am told they need to be near / above the door (that the mixers are near the door is a separate issue...). I can't see what difference that makes - if a fly buzzes in, it's not going to double back on itself to the EFK above the door behind it, so as long as they are present and a suitable distance from processing areas and equipment I would have thought that was okay.
I would like to clarify any formal requirements though before engineering moves them. One auditor was telling me how he used to have the retailers around and they had to relocate EFKs depending on which customer was coming in to meet with their specific requirements... (I think that farcical situation was resolved in the end). Thanks.


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#2 Foodworker

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 02:40 PM

Your auditor is right. There are as many opinions on this as there are species of insect and there is not a definative one that I have ever found.

If you have one major customer, follow their Code of Practice if they have one. If you have several customers you will always upset one of them on this issue.

There are some basic rules of thumb:

Don't put them right next to windows as there will be too much competing light for the insect to be attracted to the EFK
Don't put them too close to raw materials and equipment if they are of the electric grid type. Try to leave a good 5+ metres or change to the sticky pad type to stop insect/parts contaminating the product.

Also, look at your catch tray analysis. If you are getting a high figure then they are probably in the right place. If they are always low, it is good practice to move them around.

What does your pest controller advise? They are supposed to be the experts and you pay them a fair chunk of money.


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#3 Charles.C

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 03:10 PM

Dear D-D,

If you look at some older threads here / manufacturer sites, you will also see comments about correct height above the ground (ie flies are rarely dive-bombers :smile: ). It is also highly recommended to leave on all night, the efficiency in daylight is variable, but perhaps this is less of a factor in grey-skied UK.

Rgds / Charles.C


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Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#4 Bunny

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Posted 07 February 2011 - 10:56 PM

Foodworker is quite right there are many different theories where to place EFK`s in a food environment, no real scientific data has been gathered on this particular subject. So you have to rely on experience and general common sense.

The only definative work I know of was by Moray Anderson PHD in the sixties/seventies and that was on the uv light length frequencies needed to draw in as large a population of flying insects as possible into a killer unit.

Still did`nt get them all as the common house fly Fannia canicularis stubbornly refuses to be drawn into a fly killer unit and the only method of control for them is exclusion.

Here are the key rules I work to when placing EFK`s and deciding which model to employ/recommend..

1, use the correct unit with the correct UV output for the area (M2) to be covered, it is a pointless excercise in trying to achieve a satisfactory flying insect catch if the units do not have enough UV output to lure insects into them. There are sufficient guides available to help either the quality control manager with their pest controller to get that part right. Why move units around the premises?, if you use the correct units to manage the square footage and site the units correctly there is absolutely no need,

2, Use the correct unit for the situation, if there is insufficient room in the premises and the EFK`s are within 2 metres of either production, mixing, finishing or storage, to avoid potential non-conformities via physical contamination then sticky board fly killers are really the only option. The models available are now much improved in the last 5 years since demand for them has risen, and in my kosher and halal clients premises they are the only models I will recommend. Their only minor drawback is the continued cost of replacement boards which must be passed onto the client.

3, Placement, this is an issue, yes by a doorway is good if the door is kept closed when not in use, EFK`s are in direct competition with natural UV light during daylight hours and their efficacy is compromised. There is also the issue that if placed by windows and doors during the hours of darkness the same EFK`s will also draw nocturnal flying insects to the building and if the windows are not screened into the production areas.

So their placement must be made with all those aspects in mind and also do you have to call in an electrician to install them where they are to be situated. Best practice states that 2m is the optimum height for placement, but I have some units in a large oriental food importers warehouse at 10m by necessity and I still achieve good catch rates and samples. So make of that what you will.

4, Last but not least, annual servicing and UV tube replacement, UV tubes in EFK degrade with a marked peak and trough over a period of between 6-9 month dependant on the quality of manufacture. As we are a temperate climate that means that we generally only require UV tube replacements once a year in spring to make sure that the tubes are at their peak during the summer season. Ensure that all your units are serviced regularly and the tubes changed annually to guarantee their efficacy, but in more tropical climates I would have thought that UV tubes would be best replaced every 6 months.

Catch tray analysis? if you have high numbers that means you have a problem with them entering the premises in the first place, look on the other threads with regard to ERD, exclusion is the key, keep them out is the first order of the day.

I tend to use catch tray analysis to indicate trends, high numbers of specific species in a catch tray or on a sticky board will indicate there is a specific problem and requires investigation, the species presented will tell you the potential breeding material and possible harbourage, these things can all be deduced from a simple catch tray.

As with all these thing they are easy when you know how :smarty:

Bunny :biggrin:


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#5 Ptinid

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 09:36 AM

Bunny, I concur almost totally. The only slight area where we differ would be over the role of EFKs as interceptors. I firmly believe in using them to help prevent flies getting deep into plant, and that is best done by siting around room perimeters, around doorways (never in front of them) and between high risk plants and an entry point.

All of the stipulations you made still apply. Ultimately, it comes down to site survey and Risk Assessment. BRC requires a RA for siting of units and if done properly, this should be enough to satisfy any auditor.


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#6 Eya

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Posted 15 February 2011 - 03:16 PM

These things had been my guide when installing EFK:
1. It should not be placed directly facing the door or windows - The EFK UV is design to atract insect that manage to go inside production floor, not atract them to go inside the facility.
2. Always consider the height - average insect flight is about 5 to 8 feet so i make sure EFK is at this range.
3. Place the EFK near the wall and nothing should be stored below it. - Because of the height unit can be easily be damage if placed on walk or forklift ways.
4. Lesser lights is the better location for EFK light. Rule of competition.
5. EFK light used should be shatter proof.
6. Glue boards are much prepared than zapping.

Hope it helps :)


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#7 Ptinid

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Posted 22 February 2011 - 12:52 PM

Some thoughts on Fly Killer Counts and Analysis

Having sited your fly killers, you then have to make sure the counts are taken and are accurate, and you must have some criteria for assessing the risks that the numbers pose to product.

Many companies (ours included) have a somewhat arbitrary set of figures that we generally use. However, where we have consistent takes greater than the criterai set, we risk assess and adjust the criteria as required.

This risk assessment is based upon consumer complaints and/or QA fails due to flying insects (any species). If you can consistently show that the numbers in the fly killers results in zero complaints/ QA fails you can argue that the threshold for action can be set in relation to that count level.

This is, I admit, open to argument, but so far this approach has been useful and quite successful where auditors question apparently high fly counts.

The argument is, of course, that the only safe number is zero, but I have only one fly killer in my entire portfolio which gives that result occassionally, and that is in a sealed room in the middle of a factory.

I have had auditors state that counts are 'in excess of industry standards'. They can never supply those industry standards! As with all pest management systems, risk assessment is the best way to ensure that you are as safe as you can be in an audit. You have to make sure that every fly killer is subject to a positional risk assessment. Why is it there, what is the purpose (interception, general control, attraction away from a key process location), how often is it being checked.

Final point on counts. Increasing the number of fly killers will not usually reduce the number of flies taken in direct proportion. What it will do in increase the total number of flies taken per period in that area, although individual unit counts may drop.


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