White Paper

Improving Food Safety Inspection of Bulk Products

White Paper

Discover how bulk food inspection can protect consumer welfare and brand reputations

Bulk Food Inspection
Bulk Food Inspection

This white paper explains the benefits of submitting bulk foods to product inspection and explores key factors which affect the sensitivity of bulk food inspection equipment on food lines. It also looks at typical bulk food applications and discusses which inspection technologies can be used and how to use them to minimize false rejects.

X-ray inspection and metal detection systems have different inspection capabilities which directly influence sensitivity. In addition, various types of belt materials, product transfer options and automatic reject systems are available to ensure optimal bulk food inspection. An awareness of these prior to choosing and installing product inspection equipment will help manufacturers minimize product waste, save costs and improve productivity.

The white paper focuses on the following areas in detail:

  • Why submit bulk foods to product inspection?
  • How to establish CCPs for a product inspection system on a bulk food line?
  • What are the benefits of inspecting bulk foods inline?
  • Which factors affect the sensitivity of product inspection equipment on bulk food lines?
  • Which technology – metal detection, x-ray inspection or both?

A final section has been included which advises readers on testing x-ray systems and gravity-fall and conveyorized metal detectors to ensure they continue to operate in accordance with the specified sensitivity standard and reject contaminated product.

Download this informative white paper to learn more.

Bulk-flow product inspection systems typically inspect loose product before it's packaged or added as an ingredient to a finished product. However, in some cases, inspection may take place at the end of the production process to minimize the risk of further contamination.

The benefits of inspecting bulk foods before final processing and packaging are numerous. Contaminants will often be at their largest and most easily detectable at the beginning of the production line. Catching them early may allow manufacturers to recover product and feed it back into the line before further value is added, as well as monitor suppliers' quality control. Additionally, it can also help to save time and money by preventing damage to downstream processing equipment caused by larger contaminants.

When using x-ray technology, contamination detection levels are typically better in the early stages of the production process where unprocessed bulk product can be presented in a shallower depth and with a more uniform (homogeneous) texture than in final sealed packs. In contrast, depth of product doesn't affect metal detection sensitivity. In fact, sensitivity may even be greater when inspecting small packs, compared to loose product. Despite this, metal detectors are ideal for inspecting loose, free-falling product, and sensitivity to all metals is very high, even under conditions with very high throughputs.