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#1 MaryQA

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Posted 21 December 2016 - 02:28 AM

Hello everyone

 

I need to validate our internal laundry effectiveness. 

We just recently moved to this system 

 

I check the cleanliness with protein swabbing (weekly and randomly swab few uniforms)

 

I asked an external lab for technical advise they said, we should send actual gourmets for tests

which does not sound very practical.

 

If you have any internal laundry experience, I would be grateful to receive your advice on what tests to be done

 

Best Regards

Mary 



#2 Andy_Yellows

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Posted 21 December 2016 - 09:41 AM

Hi Mary,

 

The company we use for our laundry use a lab to validate their own work. The results are then made available to us on request. I haven't ever used a different laundry company so can't generalise too much but knowing what I now do, I'd be a little bit miffed if a new company wasn't to do the same. Have you asked the laundry company if they do this themselves?

 

Andy


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#3 Charles.C

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Posted 21 December 2016 - 09:55 AM

Hi Mary,

 

You do not mention a FS Standard but IIRC some expect basic micro data. There are older threads here on this topic.

 

TBH, yr comments are I think one of the reasons why many people use external services -  less auditor headaches.


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


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#4 liberator

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Posted 21 December 2016 - 08:41 PM

Hi Mary,

 

May I ask what industry you are in? There actually is an Australian standard for laundry practices, AS/NZS 4146:2000. I've just completed an audit on our external laundry service provider and one of the key points that need to be meet is the time/temperature used for the washing & drying process to ensure correct disinfection/cleaning and then validation of this.

 

Our laundry service provider has all of the chemicals, washing/drying programs managed by their chemical provider as they have a section that has experts in that area. The company also has surface swabs taken annually of garments pre and post wash for TPC and these must meet the standards.

 

You also need to consider cross contamination between dirty and clean laundry. No tests done for checking of soiling levels pre and post wash - the level of bacteria could be a better indicator. But if your interested in allergen management and cross contamination then do you need to test for these after washing to ensure their complete removal? If you're laundering only your gear then no issue with cross contamination from other food manufactures but would need to consider clothing from different areas within the facility i.e. raw vs finished product.



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#5 MaryQA

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Posted 21 December 2016 - 09:20 PM

Hi Mary,

 

May I ask what industry you are in? There actually is an Australian standard for laundry practices, AS/NZS 4146:2000. I've just completed an audit on our external laundry service provider and one of the key points that need to be meet is the time/temperature used for the washing & drying process to ensure correct disinfection/cleaning and then validation of this.

 

Our laundry service provider has all of the chemicals, washing/drying programs managed by their chemical provider as they have a section that has experts in that area. The company also has surface swabs taken annually of garments pre and post wash for TPC and these must meet the standards.

 

You also need to consider cross contamination between dirty and clean laundry. No tests done for checking of soiling levels pre and post wash - the level of bacteria could be a better indicator. But if your interested in allergen management and cross contamination then do you need to test for these after washing to ensure their complete removal? If you're laundering only your gear then no issue with cross contamination from other food manufactures but would need to consider clothing from different areas within the facility i.e. raw vs finished product.

Thanks for your reply and sharing your experience

 

I am in a blending/packing business which is basically low risk

 

Company bought two washing machines and driers allocated to staff uniforms,

We follow machines normal program to wash

our laundry procedure is mainly based on visual cleaning e.g. :soak for 1/2 hr and add bleach when stains are hard to remove  e.g. cacao

 

how about using TBC swab and sending to the external lab for analysis?

 

Thank you so much 



#6 MaryQA

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Posted 21 December 2016 - 09:23 PM

Hi Mary,

 

You do not mention a FS Standard but IIRC some expect basic micro data. There are older threads here on this topic.

 

TBH, yr comments are I think one of the reasons why many people use external services -  less auditor headaches.

Thanks for your advice Charles.

 

Company is HACCP and WQA certified and we planing to implement BRC also

 

Cheers



#7 MaryQA

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Posted 21 December 2016 - 09:31 PM

Hi Mary,

 

The company we use for our laundry use a lab to validate their own work. The results are then made available to us on request. I haven't ever used a different laundry company so can't generalise too much but knowing what I now do, I'd be a little bit miffed if a new company wasn't to do the same. Have you asked the laundry company if they do this themselves?

 

Andy

Hi Andy,

 

Thanks for your reply

 

If you donot mind, Can you please give me more details on what tests they carried out or what sort of evidence they provided to you 

I am not sure if a laundry company wants to share their technical practice with us

 

Kind regards



#8 Harminnie

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Posted 21 December 2016 - 09:49 PM

We are a small low-risk BRC certified company. We do our own laundry and haven't had any BRC issues. We made an SOP based on the detergent and new machine instructions. It is posted at the washer. We also have a dryer SOP posted. The key is taking them out right away and swab them- I think ours is a quarterly validation check. Each time we do the laundry we do a visual verification that they are clean. If you let them sit or hang in storage or lockers for awhile and then check them, the results will be higher-same if you check laundry from a service after it hangs for awhile.  Use a covered bin to transport the clean clothes and use a different bin for dirty clothes. Let me know if you'd like any additional information.  Don't make it too complicated if you are low risk-make it safe.



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#9 MaryQA

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Posted 21 December 2016 - 11:05 PM

We are a small low-risk BRC certified company. We do our own laundry and haven't had any BRC issues. We made an SOP based on the detergent and new machine instructions. It is posted at the washer. We also have a dryer SOP posted. The key is taking them out right away and swab them- I think ours is a quarterly validation check. Each time we do the laundry we do a visual verification that they are clean. If you let them sit or hang in storage or lockers for awhile and then check them, the results will be higher-same if you check laundry from a service after it hangs for awhile.  Use a covered bin to transport the clean clothes and use a different bin for dirty clothes. Let me know if you'd like any additional information.  Don't make it too complicated if you are low risk-make it safe.

Thanks Harminnie for sharing your experiences. 

You right I should keep it as simple as possible

 

Do you have a checklist for your visual inspection? We load the machines like 5 times per day

Which swab do you use? how often do you swab?

 

Kind regards



#10 liberator

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Posted 22 December 2016 - 03:02 AM

Hi Mary,

 

we use a sponge swab which we purchase through ThermoFisher, this has a larger surface area compared to the old cotton tipped swab and they also come pre-moistened with a sanitiser neutraliser so no need to carry around a bottle of peptone to wet your dry swabs before sampling.

Attached Files



#11 Charles.C

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Posted 22 December 2016 - 04:10 AM

Hi Mary,

 

A few selected Laundry threads from the many for BRC Food  -

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...undry-clothing/

(BRC 2014)

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...or-brc-food-v6/

(BRC 2012 )

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...-manufacturing/

(BRC 2009 with attached refs Post9)


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#12 Andy_Yellows

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Posted 22 December 2016 - 08:44 AM

Hi Mary,

 

I've attached a set of the micro results from our laundry company to give you an idea of what tests are undertaken. Hope this helps.

 

Regards,

 

Andy

 

Attached Files


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#13 Charles.C

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Posted 22 December 2016 - 03:46 PM

Hi Andy,

 

thks for excel. Please note that one important unit is omitted - counts per X (eg X maybe = cm2 or the whole contact plate area respectively)

 

I deduce the marked alert/action values of 4/5 respectively are some kind of calculated statistical values related to a process "in control" ?

 

Offhand, the garment count results look pretty good to me if per whole plate (eg compared to suggested limits in previous linked post9).


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#14 Harminnie

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Posted 22 December 2016 - 11:11 PM

AS previously stated, we are a low-risk site. We've always done our own clothes so we came up with the attached and kept it simple. So far so good. RA could use a bit of pumping up. 

Attached Files



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#15 Charles.C

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Posted 23 December 2016 - 05:05 AM

Hi Harminnie,

 

Many thanks yr comments/attachments. No offence intended but I struggled to understand yr RA as detailed below. Not too sure as to the "simple". Maybe it's just me. :smile:

 

The relevant BRC text appears to be -

 

Washing of protective clothing by the employee is exceptional but shall be acceptable where the protective clothing is to protect the employee from the products handled and the clothing is worn in enclosed product or low-risk areas only.

 

I note that the BRC use of "low risk area" does not, afaik, involve any allergen-related risk assessment.

 

The exact/intended BRC meaning of the first quoted  "red" text is unclear to me and I do not know of the clarification in BRC guidelines (if any).

 

Notwithstanding the above BRC areal risk comment, I deduce from yr RA that you have utilised potential  allergenic hazards to fulfil the (first) red text requirement. Is this (IMO)  conceptually  ingenious logic acceptable to the BRC auditor ?

 

Assuming Yes so that allergen-related hazards are relevant, I am confused by yr RA eg (a) severity due to an actual allergen incident is surely not LOW?, (b) i agree that there could be a clothing-vectored, allergen, cross-contamination hazard  between allergenically dissimilar products  but yr RA seems to conclude the risk is non-significant, ie no requirement for specialised clothing, or are you proposing the use of clothing be a PRP hence justifying a low risk ? If so,  I guess you are envisaging some kind of clothing change between products in addition to the usual Sanitation procedures ?.

 

Whether an (allergen) option relates to Mary's process is unknown ??.

 

JFI , some related BRC discussion for a Low Risk situation is in this thread (ignore the IFS location disparity) -

 

http://www.ifsqn.com...r-work-clothes/


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


#16 classic

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Posted 23 December 2016 - 08:44 AM

Just thought I'd share my experience of validating the laundry cleaning of PPE.  I was always led to believe that the swabbing of garments is not an effective method and that it is necessary to actually send a piece of a garment to the lab for testing which is what our contracted 3rd party laundry do to validate their process.  I then check and have copies of their results when carrying out our scheduled audit.



#17 AS NUR

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Posted 23 December 2016 - 09:12 AM

Hello everyone

 

I need to validate our internal laundry effectiveness. 

We just recently moved to this system 

 

I check the cleanliness with protein swabbing (weekly and randomly swab few uniforms)

 

I asked an external lab for technical advise they said, we should send actual gourmets for tests

which does not sound very practical.

 

If you have any internal laundry experience, I would be grateful to receive your advice on what tests to be done

 

Best Regards

Mary 

Hy Mary,

 

Here i send file to evaluation your laundry.. hope this can work for you.

 

Rgds

 

AS NurAttached File  02_laundry_evaluation.pdf   38.91KB   117 downloads



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