Food boxes and chicken crate disinfection

SonoSteam processes are ideal for use on heavily contaminated fish and meat boxes

Food boxes are not only contaminated with bacteria. Organic residues on the surfaces of food boxes cause far more problems. Dried or sticky residues may shield bacteria or hamper the effect of cleaning detergents and cause more debris to build up on the surface. Mechanical cleaning and water rinses may not be able to remove all residues and bacteria may grow to critically high numbers to form biofilms that are extremely difficult to sanitize.

Chemical disinfection

Chemical disinfection is dependent on the concentrations used; however, food residues may dilute or neutralize the chemical to a point at which higher solutions may be necessary. Chemicals are not ideal sanitizing agents in food production and are often very expensive. SonoSteam processes do not use any chemicals. The processes are highly cost-effective as steam consumption is kept at an absolute minimum. Each of the SonoSteam nozzles only consume 6 grams of steam per second!

Food box cases

Food box disinfection equipment

SonoSteam disinfection

Naturally contaminated fish box disinfected with SonoSteam processes

Pilot scale studies on naturally contaminated fish boxes containing a heavy film of protein residues were SonoSteam treated for just one second. The steam consumption was less than 50 g/s and the treatment was continuous at 90 °C with no water rinse. The short treatment reached full reduction of Listeria in just one second. The initial contamination levels on the fish boxes were around 5 log. Protein residues on the fish box were clearly de-naturized and “lifted” off the surface, not burned on to it, which is important since burned residues often hide bacteria. Detached residues on this box were easily rinsed off after just a short water rinse. The rapid treatment creates many options for online sanitization of fish boxes. The treatment can reduce the contaminations of listeria on packed products and potentially lower the risk of cross-contaminations.

Disinfection of meat transportation – naturally contaminated with Enterobacteriaceae and meat residues

Challenges with meat transportation boxes occur because of severe contamination of meat, blood and oily residues. These surfaces may contribute to additional problems with residue accumulation on dried surfaces and therefore the risk of heavy bcontamination. In turn, high contamination increases the risk of cross-contamination directly to meat products and even packaging.

SonoSteam processes kill the microorganisms on any challenging surface

SonoSteam has been tested on naturally contaminated meat transportation boxes that were heavily contaminated with meat and blood. These boxes were treated with SonoSteam for only one sec. at 90°C in continuos treatment. Swabbing was performed before and after the treatment and samples were analyzed for Enterobacteriaceae. The contamination levels before the treatment were around log 5. Following SonoSteam treatment, full reductions were accomplished. During swabbing, it was noticed that meat residues were far more easily detached from the surface in comparison to untreated areas. Thus, the SonoSteam process was able to coagulate meat proteins of  the surface, but without burning them onto the surface.

Disinfection of chicken crates – naturally contaminated with Campylobacter and fecal residues

Crates are an important source of cross-contamination as they are one of the important vectors in transition of Campylobacter from unwashed fecal residues to end products. Therefore, it is particularly important to decontaminate crates before and after use. Poultry crate wash and disinfection have been tested on naturally Campylobacter contaminated crates received directly from a slaughter plant. Crates before treatment were contaminated with levels around log 5. After 2 seconds of SonoSteam treatment complete reductions were found.

Poultry crates