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Does anybody have experience with the use of skin care cremes in a production environment in relation to food safety?


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okido

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Posted 26 April 2005 - 09:31 AM

We are a producer of plastic packaging materials under the BRC IoP category B.
In our production operators use skin care cream.
To prevent that tubes are laying around between and on the machines we change to one central dispenser.
This reased a new question for us, "can skin care cream can be used under BRC IoP". The cream is perfume and silicone free.
Does anybody have experience with the use of skin care cremes in a production environment in relation to food safety?

Have a nice day, Okido



Simon

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Posted 26 April 2005 - 08:05 PM

In our production operators use skin care cream.

Hello Okido,

With it being unscented I think you should be OK.

Is there much / any direct handling of the food packaging by operators?

Regards,
Simon

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okido

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Posted 27 April 2005 - 06:51 AM

There is unavoidable direct hand contact with the product.
The contact spots do not come in contact with the finaly packed food, direct contamination of the food is highly unlikely.

Okido



Simon

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Posted 27 April 2005 - 08:03 AM

Good day Okido,

The fact that the cream is low risk combined with the fact that operator's hands do not touch the food contact element of your packaging makes the risk of any contamination very small. What packaging do you manufacture Okido is it plastic containers / cups?

From what you have told me I would be very confident in saying that you are OK with the hand cream system you have implemented. :king:

There was quite clearly a need for hand cream in your facility, that's why people brought their own in. You have addressed a potential problem sensibly and instead of banning its use you have provided a central source that you can control. No excuses for Operators. ;)

Except that is until you find that one or two Operators are still bringing their own in because they don't like the hand cream that you have provided - 'it doesn't suit my skin.' Just some personal experience of mine and in the end we had to have two types of skin cream.

Good Practice Tip:
Make sure the cream dispenser has a label affixed to it with the ingredients list, safety data etc. That goes for soaps too. :thumbup:

Regards,
Simon


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Witch

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Posted 27 April 2005 - 12:06 PM

Does anybody have experience with the use of skin care cremes in a production environment in relation to food safety?


Hi Okido,
from my point of view, you should declare some microbial criteria for the cream and test it. In the dispensers you will find a very fast and very high contamination of the cream with microbes. Depending on the incredients it is stable for weeks or only for days. :(
You told us, that there would be only minimal risk for the food resulting from direct contact. But think about the possible cross-contamination via surfaces (hand - surface - food) :uhm:
And if you will find some contamination in your dispenser, take care that it is decontaminated in the right way!

:bye:


Simon

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Posted 27 April 2005 - 12:33 PM

Thanks for the interesting information.

1. Don't forget the process we are discussing is the manufacture of food packaging and not the food itself.

2. The part of the packaging that will eventually come into direct contact with the food is not handled by operators.

Therefore do we still need to declare some microbial criteria for the cream and test it?

Regards,
Simon


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okido

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Posted 28 April 2005 - 06:17 AM

It is interesting that Witch comes up with the microbiological issue.
The cream we use complies with the standards for microbiological purity that also applies for medicines that are intended non-oral use.
I think that Witch has a point if the cream would be in a jar were you scoop the cream out with your hands. This is not the case, the cream is delivered by a pump system.
Nevertheless I will try to get the opinion of the cream producer on this point.
Simon, we produce bags and films for food packaging.

Have a nice day, Okido



Witch

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Posted 28 April 2005 - 07:27 AM

we produce bags and films for food packaging.


So it seems that there is definitely no contact at all between the packaging material and the food... :clap:
HACCP and risk analysis could not be done without knowing the exact details... :uhm:
And for that - Simon, you are right - it might not be neccessary to probe the cream.
Nevertheless, I wanted to give you the information about microbes in cream from the laboratory point of view!
Most creams are really a microbe trap!

(Sorry, about my english!)

:bye:


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Posted 28 April 2005 - 07:44 AM

(Sorry, about my english!)

Don't be it is fantastic. Having tried and failed to speak (never mind write) German and French in my younger years I have tremendous admiration for those of you who have succeeded where I failed. With this being an English language based discussion forum sometimes we (I) take for granted that people come here form all over the world with different mother tongues than English. It is perhaps easier to ask directions to the train station or for a cup of coffee in another language but not so easy to talk freely around the finer technical points of HACCP and such like. Mucho respecto to you all! :king:

Nevertheless, I wanted to give you the information about microbes in cream from the laboratory point of view!  Most creams are really a microbe trap!


Please do I would like to know more. What particular microbes are we talking about in hand creams and does the problem also apply to hand wash soaps etc.

Regards,
Simon

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Brian Fowler

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Posted 29 April 2005 - 09:01 PM

We are a producer of plastic packaging materials under the BRC IoP category B.
In our production operators use skin care cream.
To prevent that tubes are laying around between and on the machines we change to one central dispenser.
This reased a new question for us, "can skin care cream can be used under BRC IoP". The cream is perfume and silicone free.
Does anybody have experience with the use of skin care cremes in a production environment in relation to food safety?

Have a nice day, Okido

Simple answer YES. if not perfumed and sometimes necessary to prevent skin cracking which is a worse problem.
Brian Fowler


okido

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Posted 02 May 2005 - 12:41 PM

I checked with the skin cream supplier.
The cream is packed in a container with a special valve that closes after every use. In combination with the supplied dispenser contamination is not possible.
The cream is produced under hygienic conditions conform GMP. The microbiological count is less than 100 / gram.
For now I do not see a reason to check skin cream on microbiological count.

No worries, Okido



Witch

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Posted 03 May 2005 - 02:55 PM

The microbiological count is less than 100 / gram.


Hey all,

for sure they produce the creams under sterile or nearly sterile conditions! The cosmetic rules are strict! What I wanted to tell you is that a cream (depending on the incredients soap too, Simon!) is a good base for microbial growth.
If the dispensor closes after using the cream, this is a good method to reduce possible contamination, but if a contamination occured, the microbes can grow rapidly to higher counts. (We are talking about for example Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Streptococcus spec., Staphylococcus spec. and lots of Bacilli)
So if your cream will be used rapidly, the risk is minimized. If your dispenser is cleaned between the fillings, the risk is minimized, if you have an unexpected contamination, go for your cream...!

:bye:


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Posted 03 May 2005 - 07:48 PM

Thanks for the tips Witch.

Regards,
Simon


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