In 2011, President Barack Obama signed into law the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), giving the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) broad powers to regulate how food is grown, harvested, and processed. The FSMA enables the FDA to strengthen the food safety system by focusing more on preventing problems than reacting to them after they occur.
According to the FDA, roughly 48 million people in the U.S. (1 in 6) get sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die each year as a result of a foodborne illness. Foodborne illnesses and tainted foods have cost the United States billions of dollars in recalls, lost sales, and legal expenses. The FSMA is considered the first major piece of federal legislation addressing food safety since 1938.
81% of the United States’ food supply is manufactured within the country, and the Food and Beverage industry is projected for growth well into the future. It’s now more important than ever, if you are operating a food processing facility, that you’re compliant with the FSMA requirements for the long-term health and safety of consumers and your business.
French Gerleman partners with ABB to provide a number of products tailored to outfitting food processing facility for FSMA compliance. In this article we’ll explore some of these products, detail the issues they’re designed to solve, and point you toward where to find them.
What Are the Compliance Requirements for the FSMA?
At the heart of the FSMA is the goal of establishing higher standards for cleanliness, health, and safety in food production. As with any government legislation, the Act is incredibly detailed. But essentially, the Act is comprised of the following seven rules:
- Accredited 3rd Party Certification
- Current Good Manufacturing Practice and Hazard Analysis and Risk-based Preventive Controls for Human Food
- Current Good Manufacturing Practice and Hazard Analysis and Risk-based Preventive Controls for Animal Food
- FSMA-proposed Rule on Laboratory Accreditation
- Mitigation Strategies to Protect Food Against Intentional Adulteration
- Sanitary Transportation of Human and Animal Food
- Standards for the Growing, Harvesting, Packing, and Holding of Produce for Human Consumption
FSMA compliance Solutions from French Gerleman
When it comes to FSMA compliance, the most important word for any facility involved in food production to remember is “cleanliness.” To the average person, that seems simple. But to someone in the industry, who knows how technology has advanced in food and beverage facilities, it quickly gets complex and hard to manage. French Gerleman is your source for FSMA compliant products. Below are four solutions to help your organization affordably and effectively meet the FSMA requirements.
ABB’s Anti-Microbial IP69 Flexible Conduit System
There’s a lot happening behind the scenes in any food and beverage facility. Protecting the sensitive electrical wiring systems that power your complex processing equipment has to be a priority. However, you also need to me mindful that any conduits or fittings you put in place can themselves become a home for bacteria.
ABB partnered up with BioCote to integrate anti-microbial protection into a new generation of liquid-tight conduit, offered by French Gerleman. Featuring a smooth, FDA, EC, and FSA-compliant DuPont Hytrel® thermoplastic jacket, the conduit also features an industry-first single piece liquid-tight 316 stainless steel fitting.
The threat of bacterial contamination is constant within the food and beverage industry. Decades of consumer trust can be eradicated with just a single infection. The anti-microbial additive contains inert ionic silver. That means it doesn’t react or change the appearance of the final product and won’t diminish in temperature extremes. It also won’t wear off or wash away, because it’s not simply a coating. The silver ions on the surface of a material treated with antimicrobial additives bind with microbes they come into contact with and irreparably damage them, disrupting their normal cell function, stopping them from reproducing, and finally resulting in the death of the cell.
In BioCote testing, the level of bacteria reduced by 80% in the first 15 minutes and by 99% in just two hours with this unique anti-microbial protection.
SuperCleanTM Bacteria-Resistant Wall Offset Spacers from ABB
The FSMA requires that everything attached to walls in your food processing facility to be offset, allowing for 360-degree access and cleaning. Using Ag+® FDA-compliant materials, ABB developed these spacers specifically in response to the FSMA requirement.
SuperCleanTM spacers contain silver ions, inhibiting the growth of bacteria, fungus, and mold on their surfaces. Silver is a proven antimicrobial agent that has been used in consumer products for years to combat a broad spectrum of micro-organisms. ABB’s Ag+ material was found 99.9% effective at killing E. coli, Staphylococcus, and Salmonella compared to untreated surfaces in independent laboratory testing.
ABB’s SuperCleanTM wall offset spacers feature nonmetallic construction, so corrosion is not an issue like it is with stainless steel spacers. They’re lightweight, more economical, faster, and easier to use than custom-fabricated solutions. Just open the box and install.
The ABB Stainless Steel Drain Adapter
Most solutions for draining accumulated moisture or small debris from stainless steel electrical enclosures for non-threaded connections involve improvised breathers and require wiring or caulking. Enter ABB’s stainless steel drain adapter. This solution features simple installation and provides a UL® Listed drain point at any ordinary location of the electrical system where threaded connections are not possible.
ABB’s stainless steel ball valve can also be added to the adapter, to provide the convenience of controlling and inspecting the drainage process. When using the ABB drain adapter and ball valve together and the valve is closed, the entire ABB assembly is certified for wash-down areas and offers NEMA Type 4X and IP69 ratings. Both products are constructed of Type 316 stainless steel for superior corrosion resistance.
ABB’s stainless steel drain adapter and ball valve are both NSF Certified for food and beverage applications, and manufactured with FDA-approved materials.
PMA Non-Metallic Flexible Conduit System
The level of cleanliness needed to maintain FSMA compliance means your equipment and cables are subjected to rigorous cleaning. You need to ensure you have a solution in place that will make equipment cables cleanable, while also protecting them from the ingress of dust and water.
The PMA® non-metallic flexible conduit system fulfills ingress protection at all of the applicable ratings. They are classified IP65 and IP66, which means they are able to protect against low-power and high-power jet water. But those IP ratings focus primarily on water volume, not pressure. The PMA food and beverage cable protection system is also classified as IP69, meaning your cables will be protected from hot water at pressures of up to 80 bar, which is in line with all processes commonly used for wash down in the food and beverage industry.
Corrugated nylon conduit has long been the standard in industrial cable protection because it’s flexible, strong, able to cope with frequent and fast movement, and effective in both static and dynamic operation. The innovative PMA cable protection system provides all of the traditional benefits of corrugated conduit with a smooth, easy-clean outer layer made with FDA-compliant materials.
French Gerleman offers the ABB Installation Products you need to earn and maintain compliance with the FSMA requirements. Reach out to your French Gerleman Account Manager or contact us to discuss your unique needs and solutions tailored to your facility.