March 12, 2020

Tank Cleaning for Food Grade Bulk Transport

Tank Cleaning for Food Grade Bulk TransportFood grade tank wash guidelines are an essential part of transporting food goods, including syrups, alcohol, and milk. These sanitary measures prevent contamination, bacterial growth, and safeguard the health of communities everywhere.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) outlines tank wash guidelines that must be upheld when transporting liquid goods. Guidelines are specific to the type of transported goods. For example, the FDA’s Pasteurized Milk Ordinance (PMO) states that most facilities require records showing that a food grade wash was performed before a driver can pick up the next product.

While a necessary step of food grade bulk transport, many elements of a tank wash can present a hassle for shippers, carriers, and drivers. That’s why it’s important to learn more about each procedure and why they’re performed.

What is a Food Grade Wash?

A food grade wash is a process of thoroughly cleaning the tank or trailer that was used to transport particular food or liquid goods. A tank wash is performed after carrying one product, but before loading another. This ensures that there are no lingering particles from the previous transport before loading new goods into the tank or trailer.

The type of food grade wash that may be necessary depends on the type of goods that the tank or trailer transported. In many cases, a simple detergent wash using steam and pressurized water is more than efficient. However, some products will require more extensive cleaning, and it may be necessary for the tank or trailer to be washed by hand.

The average food grade wash will take between two and three hours. However, some washes may take longer for particularly difficult products. In certain areas, there may also be a line that drivers must wait through before their tank or trailer may be washed. For this reason, products that require a tank wash are typically not unloaded and reloaded within the same day.

The Importance of Food Grade Tank Wash Practices

Food grade tank washes are essential to the health of the general public. When these practices are not followed correctly, tanks, trailers, the goods they carry may face problems such as:

  • Potential cross-contamination
  • The reduced integrity of products
  • Bacterial growth
  • Failed inspections
  • Increased cost

While food grade wash requirements are standard, there are some exceptions to the rule. For example, a wash may not be necessary if a carrier intends to unload a specific liquid product before loading the same product. If the transported commodities are identical, a wash may not be a necessary step in the shipment process.

In addition to quality and safety concerns, a food grade tank wash is necessary for specific types of certifications. For example, to transport kosher foods, a tank or trailer must continue to meet additional expectations.

A Closer Look at the Tank Wash Process

Tanks and trailers carrying certain goods must undergo a food grade tank wash before the tank or trailer can be loaded with a new product. This process can add time and costs to each shipment.

In some cases, drivers may have to go out of their way to reach a food-grade wash station. Wash stations are often far and few between, and, at times, drivers may even need to go to another state. Not every washing facility is capable of performing a food grade tank wash. Some facilities are equipped to handle chemicals, hazardous material, or other non-food products. Washing facilities may also vary in the type of equipment they carry and the type of washes they are capable of providing.

After the tank wash, the wash station provides the driver with a washout slip. This slip details the type of wash that was performed and the equipment that was used. Drivers must present this slip to facilities before the new product can be loaded. These guidelines assist facilities in verifying the condition of the tank or trailer and that the wash was completed correctly. The tank or trailer must undergo another food grade tank wash if the initial wash does not meet the facility’s standards. These standards must be met before any new products can be loaded.

Finding the Right Transport Solutions

It’s essential to find a trucking company that is capable of handling food grade tank wash guidelines to protect the integrity of a brand or product while safeguarding the health of communities everywhere.

Kan-Haul has thrived as one of the nation’s leaders in food grade transportation. While Kan-Haul is a leader in cleaning and safety standards, we pride ourselves on our economical costs, timely deliveries, and pristine support provided to our customers worldwide.

Are you searching for the best transport solutions for your business? Kan-Haul has been a leader of the alcohol transport business for nearly 30 years. Contact us today to get started.

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