Sanitary Flooring Systems for Maximum Food Safety
In any facility that processes or packages food or beverage products, excellent hygienic conditions are imperative, as anything else could jeopardize the safety of the food and, ultimately, the health of consumers. To help maintain a safe, clean environment free of dangerous pathogens, flooring surfaces must be easy to thoroughly clean. Incidental spills are a reality of working with food and beverages, so it is to be expected that sooner or later, some amount of the product is going to end up on the floor. The Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) of the USDA outlines construction guidelines for different types of facilities producing and packaging foodstuffs; FSIS and other visiting agency inspectors pay close attention to flooring compliancy.
Government agency recommendations for food facilities include easy-to-clean flooring possessing smooth, intact, monolithic surfaces in good condition, with no cracks, breaches, pits or degraded areas. The construction guides for meat and poultry plants outline the installation of integral floor-to-wall cove bases, wherein the resinous floor is built to curve upward where it meets the wall, eliminating ninety degree angles and allowing for much easier and more effective cleaning. Additionally, flooring standards for many food and beverage plants instruct on the degree to which a floor should properly slope toward the floor drain in wet processing and wash down areas, eliminating low spots where puddling and stagnant pooling can encourage potentially dangerous micro-organisms to flourish.
One of the many benefits of a resinous flooring system is that it is installed as a liquid. With the exception of certain isolated joints in the slab, the floors allow for a solid, uninterrupted, nearly seamless surface. These appropriate USDA compliant floors also possess thermal shock resistance, which is key in the food & beverage industry .
Heavy-Duty Flooring for Employee Work Areas
Any location where employees regularly work must be equipped with a flooring system capable of withstanding steady rates of wear and foot traffic, as well as accommodating any special requirements of the operation. The floor should be slip-resistant to help mitigate the risk of falls, while simultaneously balancing easy clean-ability of the surface. Wet processing areas require highly moisture tolerant flooring tolerant of extreme temperature cycling, while combustible powder storage locations may need static control flooring. And nearly all processing, packaging and bottling plants require acid and alkali resistant flooring with superior impact resistance and compressive strength to support heavy loads.
Today’s food and beverage facilities frequently enhance company branding by specifying USDA compliant floors in official company colors. Also included are floor safety lines, directional markings and embedded brand logos. Whatever you choose, Tennant Coatings’ team of professionals is here to help. Contact us today!