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Cleaning of primary food contact packaging containers

HACCP Food Safey Packaging Food contact sanitation cleaning primary packaging primary

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Posted 29 October 2017 - 10:14 PM



We use pails, buckets and deli containers to pack our liquid product. It is not exactly a hot fill process. Sometimes the product is also repackaged into smaller containers from the larger ones if the customer wants it that way. We currently do not sanitize or clean the containers in anyway. The product itself is fruit based (20-40%) and undergoes heat treatment enough to kill viable organisms. In the past we have had issues with mold growth. I suggested that we use QAC based sanitizer to clean the buckets, pails, etc. before filling them. But the production personnel are not on board. They say that the moisture trapped in the head space will lead to more mold growth. I was wondering if anyone here has experience with similar issue and can give some suggestions. 



Ehab Nassar

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Posted 30 October 2017 - 05:59 AM

Hi yogirl ,


More data our the product ,does the recipe contains preservatives, process and filling will be helpful ,

the mold how it is looks like ,how does it appear ,is it surface mold , what is the percent of defected products in one batch and after how many months/days you observed it , how is the filling process ,how is the capping ,what is the head space ,do you keep it vacuumed, do you make the package upside down , do you  do you do you have environmental analysis for the air , do you detected mold in the air samples , are you monitored the molds in the raw and finished products ,how is the the tightness of the cover/lid of the container,  All theses questions you have to consider during investigation of mold issue in a fruit product.



Generally the plastic container is not sanitized or cleaned for such products as far the supplier has a recognized GMP/HACCP system , however you can be rest assured from the microbiological analysis (swab tests ) ,

"moisture trapped in the head space will lead to more mold growth." yes I agree with that there is a possibility for that but it is related to other parameters as per the above questions , it is not the only reason ,however you can come over this by getting the package upside down  after filling.


​If you share more answered as above we can help more.




Generally the plastic container is not sanitized or cleaned for such products as far the supplier has a recognized GMP system , however you can assure from the

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Posted 03 November 2017 - 12:29 PM

Have your containers irradiated and fill aseptically. The key is to have air tight container, with no available oxygen; remember Molds are aerobic organisms. Consider the water activity of your product and the possible use of preservatives.

Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: HACCP, Food Safey, Packaging, Food contact, sanitation, cleaning, primary packaging, primary

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