The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is responsible for protecting public health through a healthy and sanitary food supply. It does this through regulations, inspections and partnership with the food and beverage industry. In overseeing food producers, the FDA’s jurisdiction covers a broad range of products and processes all with differing levels of risk. Regulations attempt to mitigate these risks, but this is where physical solutions like wire cloth and mesh play their part in food safety.
Title 21 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Part 110 (21 CFR 110) details current food good manufacturing processes (GMPs). These are the foundation for many FDA inspections as they relate to:
The current GMPs have seven subparts which are further subdivided into addition sections.
The following five subparts are covered briefly here but more details are located at the FDA’s website.
When a food exceeds the FDA’s defect action level (DAL) it is considered “adulterated” and subject to regulatory enforcement. The FDA sets DALs for many foods, but for those it does not it evaluates samples and decides on a case-by-case basis. Consider these two FDA definitions that underscore the importance of wire cloths, meshes and 3A certified strainers in food production.
Food manufacturers are directed by the FDA to not use DALs as their standard for quality and that contaminant levels should be much lower. These are two examples of DALs, but a more extensive list is found here.
Prevent contamination with wire cloth
Woven wire cloth is used extensively in food handling. It is manufactured with mesh openings ranging anywhere from five inches to 20 microns. Strength, weight, durability, flow characteristics, heat and corrosion resistance are critical factors to consider when choosing a wire cloth material. Wire cloth is commonly woven from stainless steel wire due to its relatively low cost and high tensile strength.
Newark Wire Cloth, a recognized leader in the wire cloth industry, manufactures off-the-shelf and custom woven wire cloth for any and every application – especially for food and beverage production. It has specialized in the fabrication of wire cloth parts and assemblies for the past 105 years. Contact them today to discuss how wire cloth can help improve the sanitation and hygiene of your food processing facility.