3 tips for keeping your separator clean

Separator hygiene is imperative in the food processing industry. Effective cleaning in place (CIP) is essential for quality and regulatory compliance – and for maximizing production uptime. We give you three tips for optimal CIP results.

1) Use the right settings for discharge size and interval

When a separator discharges during the separation process, it expels residues through peripheral ports of the machine. This causes movement in the bowl and between the separator discs. If discharge volume is too small or infrequent, deposits may accumulate within the machine. Deposits that are left to accumulate for too long may become difficult to remove during CIP.

2) Make sure deposits are discharged properly during CIP

It is important to apply the right settings for discharge number and size during CIP. Each CIP stage has its own target for deposits. If loosened deposits are not discharged properly, they may get stuck and be tricky to remove. Large discharges during initial water flushing help to facilitate the other CIP stages.

3) Get your concentration and time right

Dairy protein fouling is very common when processing milk at higher temperatures and consists largely of whey proteins that have denatured and aggregated through crosslinking reactions. During CIP, lye (sodium hydroxide) is used to dislodge these deposits, including fat, while acid is used to dissolve minerals. An overly high concentration of lye can induce even more crosslinking and make fouling harder to remove, but Tetra Pak can advise on optimum concentrations for your CIP detergents. Time is also a factor: it is vital to allow sufficient time for effective cleaning. Again, Tetra Pak can advise on how to set this parameter.

Download our “Cleaning in Place” handbook

A guide to cleaning technology in the food processing industry. A booklet is for production managers, technical managers, project managers, quality managers and others who help operate food processing plants. It’s also useful for R&D staff who are developing new products or planning investments in new plant equipment or new processing lines. 

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