Think about our food for a moment.
We enjoy a diverse abundance of low-cost food, and because we live here in the United States, we only spend about 6-7 percent of our disposable income on it. That’s less than any of the other 83 other countries for which the USDA tracks data. Now, that doesn’t mean that food is necessarily cheaper here; it just means that in comparison to other countries, we spend less of our money on food and more on other things.
About 325 million people live here in the United States, so that takes a lot of flour to satisfy our hunger for biscuits, crackers, cookies, cereal, pasta, and pizza.
The quality and safety of our modern food production systems make it easier for people everywhere to live better and healthier lives. But people tend to forget that our food starts at a farm somewhere. Take flour for an example. Flour is used to make all those bread, pasta, biscuits and cakes that are delivered to shops and supermarkets where we can buy them. Farmers grow the wheat, and the grain from those wheat plants is milled in a milling facility to make the flour. Before the flour is used to bake all those bread products, it’s stored in huge silos.
A flour silo that is regularly filled and emptied, or has flour returned from the plant to the silo, can frequently suffer from condensation, particularly if the silo is located outside and not insulated. This condensation will cause flour to stick to the roof and top of the walls leaving ideal conditions for mold to grow and old flour to contaminate the new flour.
Silo cleaning is an essential part of hygiene in the food industry. That’s where we play a part in our food system.
In the past, we cleaned these flour silos by scraping and brushing them to remove the caked on flour and any mold, followed by pressure washing. After a thorough drying, the silos were ready to be put back into use.
After dry ice blasting to remove the caked on flour and other contaminants, the silo is ready to be out back in to use.
We use dry ice (CO2) blasting now. We’ve found it’s faster to clean the silos and, because dry ice blasting is a dry process, the silo is almost immediately ready to be filled. Dry ice blasting not only cleans these silos efficiently, but also effectively decontaminates the surfaces of Salmonella, Listeria, and E. Coli.
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Dry Ice Blasting