Bredel pumps provide hygienic solutions at Russian food plant
A global brand sauce and condiments manufacturing plant in Russia needed to replace pumps that were proving difficult to clean and maintain, being used to pump products that include cheese sauce, tomato ketchup and mayonnaise.
Hygiene is paramount in food industry applications, where any failures can have a devastating impact on brand reputation. For this reason, the Russian plant chose Bredel CIP 50 pumps from Watson-Marlow Fluid Technology Group (WMFTG) that are available with the option of externally operated retracting shoes to release the hose so that the line is open and unobstructed for cleaning. Pumps featuring this option are used with a food-approved hose and food-grade lubricant, both from WMFTG, while stainless steel sanitary connectors include DIN, ASA and JIS types.
WMFTG is a leader in niche peristaltic and sinusoidal pumps and associated fluid path technologies with over 60 years’ experience and over one million pumps installed worldwide. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of Spirax-Sarco Engineering, a global organisation employing approximately 4800 people worldwide, and has 29 offices around the world.
Hygiene and sterility are crucial at the plant where, depending on the production plan, CIP is often scheduled daily. The process takes place at full velocity using food industry standard cleaning agents such as Tarmo (1%) and ET (0.3–0.5%).
Bredel CIP 50 pumps have been installed on two filling lines to transfer cheese sauce, which is heated to 75°C. Here, the sauce needs to be pumped quickly from the hoppers to the filling line at flow rates of up to 7000 L/h. If the sauce cools in the pump hose or in the transfer lines it will solidify, which would cause huge cleaning issues because hot water and stronger cleaning agents would be needed to break down the starch and fats.
Elsewhere on the site, Bredel CIP pumps transfer ketchup through 20 m long pipework with 7 m delivery. The pumps dose ketchup with a viscosity of 50,000 cP (at 30–40°C) from the hoppers to a line that fills plastic single-serving sachets for fast food outlets. On the same line, plastic sachets are also filled with mayonnaise (5000 cP), again for fast food outlets.
Aside from ease of cleaning, there were several important factors to consider before selecting pumps, not least of which is the shear thinning of these thixotropic sauces. Further factors included the avoidance of air entrainment, which could lead the sachets to burst upon filling, and the need for sterility. Sachets are in high demand in the Russian market, where glass bottles are deemed unacceptable. The same is true in Africa, which is a major export market for the plant.
Ultimately, the gentle, low-shear capability of Bredel pumps was put forward by the contractor that supplied the Rossi and Catelli filling system. The recommendation was supported by referencing the use of Bredel pumps at other group plants outside of Russia.
“WMFTG has a very strong competitive advantage in the quality and performance parameters of its pumps,” said the plant’s purchasing manager. “As a result, we are now standardising on Bredel pumps as the most reliable, efficient and minimal maintenance solution. This will have further site-wide benefits in terms of spares management and operator knowledge.”
The customer is now planning to upgrade another site in Russia, where Bredel pump technology will again be deployed.
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