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Sanitation Flour Mill SQF

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#1 AbbyNormal

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Posted 07 January 2021 - 10:23 PM

Hi Everyone! I'm new here, and new to food production and sanitation at an SQF facility. I passed a HACCP certification course recently but I still don't feel entirely confident. I've learned a good bit from browsing the forum as a guest here but I've finally decided to sign up and ask for some advice and experiences from those who have worked in the industry longer and have more knowledge in these matters. So here I am, humbly asking for your help. I've been asked to review and possibly revamp our sanitation plan. Currently, our plan calls for us to sanitize bucket elevators, augers and silos. This is a very small flour mill and most of our equipment was purchased and installed before we even considered SQF certification so it has seams and pockets for things to hide in. This stresses me out because if we ATP test this stuff as requested, it feels like lying, there's no way to clean the equipment well enough to pass an ATP test with a 2000 RLU limit. The bucket elevators, for instance, are 6x6 and 20+ feet tall. I have personally climbed inside the silos and scraped the walls down but again, that's not a situation I want to put anyone in. It wouldn't pass an ATP test then, either, as there are seams where the panels bolt together. While these things can be fogged to sanitize them I just wanted to find out what others are doing in their facilities. It makes more sense to me to knock dust and residuals down as much as possible in the raw grain areas and vacuum out the ports at the bottom of the silos, augers and elevators. I'd prefer to focus on pest and dust control in those areas, rather than trying to get them to pass an ATP test. I'd like to focus most of our sanitation efforts on the finished goods areas instead. It's a closed system with a combination of air transport and augers to move grain and flour in certain spots (augers for raw grain, air transport for the milling process and then augers again to move finished flour into and out of the finished goods silos). If there are any more details I can provide to help clarify things, please let me know and I'll do my best. I'd love to hear your advice and experience with sanitation in a small flour mill. I want to do the job right and the insight of those with more experience would help me immensely to feel more confident in my work here. 

Thank you so much for reading this and expending effort on my behalf.


Edited by Jacob Timperley, 08 January 2021 - 11:25 AM.


#2 Charles.C

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Posted 08 January 2021 - 02:59 AM

Hi Everyone!

I'm new here, and new to food production and sanitation at an SQF facility. I passed a HACCP certification course recently but I still don't feel entirely confident. I've learned a good bit from browsing the forum as a guest here but I've finally decided to sign up and ask for some advice and experiences from those who have worked in the industry longer and have more knowledge in these matters. So here I am, humbly asking for your help. I've been asked to review and possibly revamp our sanitation plan. 

 

Currently, our plan calls for us to sanitize bucket elevators, augers and silos. This is a very small flour mill and most of our equipment was purchased and installed before we even considered SQF certification so it has seams and pockets for things to hide in. This stresses me out because if we ATP test this stuff as requested, it feels like lying, there's no way to clean the equipment well enough to pass an ATP test with a 2000 RLU limit. The bucket elevators, for instance, are 6x6 and 20+ feet tall. I have personally climbed inside the silos and scraped the walls down but again, that's not a situation I want to put anyone in. It wouldn't pass an ATP test then, either, as there are seams where the panels bolt together. While these things can be fogged to sanitize them I just wanted to find out what others are doing in their facilities. It makes more sense to me to knock dust and residuals down as much as possible in the raw grain areas and vacuum out the ports at the bottom of the silos, augers and elevators. I'd prefer to focus on pest and dust control in those areas, rather than trying to get them to pass an ATP test. I'd like to focus most of our sanitation efforts on the finished goods areas instead. It's a closed system with a combination of air transport and augers to move grain and flour in certain spots (augers for raw grain, air transport for the milling process and then augers again to move finished flour into and out of the finished goods silos). If there are any more details I can provide to help clarify things, please let me know and I'll do my best. I'd love to hear your advice and experience with sanitation in a small flour mill. I want to do the job right and the insight of those with more experience would help me immensely to feel more confident in my work here. 

Thank you so much for reading this and expending effort on my behalf.

 

Hi Abby,

 

Not my product area at all but thanks for yr highly readable and understandable OP.

 

There are some related threads on this forum (listed below) which demonstrate yr problems, eg cleaning inaccessible large equipment,  are not uncommon in the flour business (and other food areas). Particularly, I anticipate, for older systems.

 

https://www.ifsqn.co...les/#entry37481

https://www.ifsqn.co...nt/#entry130644

https://www.ifsqn.co...ble/#entry22904

 

Unfortunately simple, comprehensive solutions seem to be more elusive, eg -

.

https://www.gea.com/...-flour-silo.jsp

 

There is a lot of info. on IT but mostly selling equipment (trade secrets). Not specifically on yr OP but I noticed 2 general flour mill items attached below which may be of limited interest. The former has an iso22000-oriented haccp scheme (1st version) which is IMO quite well-done albeit containing a few questionable features.

 

Attached File  FSMS System for Flour Mill.pdf   12.83MB   22 downloads

Attached File  Insect Control in Flour Mills, USDA..pdf   1.39MB   18 downloads

 

Interested to see further inputs on the Sanitation aspect.


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


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#3 AbbyNormal

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Posted 08 January 2021 - 06:02 PM

Hi Abby,

 

Not my product area at all but thanks for yr highly readable and understandable OP.

 

There are some related threads on this forum (listed below) which demonstrate yr problems, eg cleaning inaccessible large equipment,  are not uncommon in the flour business (and other food areas). Particularly, I anticipate, for older systems.

 

https://www.ifsqn.co...les/#entry37481

https://www.ifsqn.co...nt/#entry130644

https://www.ifsqn.co...ble/#entry22904

 

Unfortunately simple, comprehensive solutions seem to be more elusive, eg -

.

https://www.gea.com/...-flour-silo.jsp

 

There is a lot of info. on IT but mostly selling equipment (trade secrets). Not specifically on yr OP but I noticed 2 general flour mill items attached below which may be of limited interest. The former has an iso22000-oriented haccp scheme (1st version) which is IMO quite well-done albeit containing a few questionable features.

 

attachicon.gif FSMS System for Flour Mill.pdf

attachicon.gif Insect Control in Flour Mills, USDA..pdf

 

Interested to see further inputs on the Sanitation aspect.

 

Thank you Charles! I have read those forums you linked above but found the verbiage a little... vague. I tried to make this OP a bit more specific and I'm glad to see, based on your comment, that I achieved that goal! I've printed the PDF you linked about flour mills in India, I'm currently reading through it at my desk and appreciating the time you spent gathering that information for me. Thank you very much!







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