Industrial food storage: 4 essential equipment

Tips for choosing the best equipment for food storage

Tuesday 21 February 2023

Food storage is a very important aspect of the production processes of food processing, preparation and sales industries. Whether the food is easily perishable or has a long shelf life, proper storage is essential to ensure the quality of the products and ensure consumer safety.

The preservation of food is not only about preventing it from deteriorating, but also about maintaining all its properties and organoleptic characteristics. The purpose of food preservation techniques is therefore to kill bacteria, moulds and other harmful microbes that could cause problems for the body if they are not eliminated through special processes.

In the food industry, storage and handling of products must be carried out with suitable equipment, specifically designed for contact with food. IFT produces safe and certified plastic equipment for food companies, designed to facilitate and improve storage processes of different types of food products. Here are some tips for choosing the best equipment for storing food.

The main methods of food preservation

In general, food preservation methods aim to combat product alteration and limit the growth of micro-organisms, slowing down oxidation and preventing the occurrence of chemical reactions that could alter the taste or change the nutritional value of foods. There are different food preservation techniques, which may vary depending on the type of products and the processing they are subjected to. Among the main ones we find:

  • refrigeration, a temporary storage method that slows down bacterial growth and spoilage of food. Generally, refrigeration is carried out at a temperature between 0 and 10 ºC;
  • freezing, one of the most widely used preservation techniques in the food industry because it allows food to be stored for long periods and prevents the growth of bacteria, bringing the temperatures from -4 ºC. up to very low temperatures (- 18 ºC). Freezing prevents the spoilage of food by destroying the enzymes responsible for the deterioration. It can be used, for example, to store seasonal foods (so that they can also be consumed later), such as fruits and vegetables, but also meat, fish and sweets;
  • drying, one of the oldest preservation techniques, which consists in the almost complete elimination of food water in order to maintain its organoleptic properties. The treatment can be performed with different modes and temperatures. In order to perform it at best and prevent contaminants from altering the properties of food, it is appropriate to use special dryers or drying frames, such as those proposed by IFT, that guarantee maximum safety and hygiene;
  • salt storage, also called "salting", based on the antiseptic properties of salt, which can be carried out either dry (by sprinkling), or in brine, by immersion in an aqueous solution of different salt concentration;

A combination of two or more preservation techniques may also be required for some particular foods to achieve optimal results.

Food storage and preservation: what HACCP provides

As we have seen, proper preservation is essential to avoid possible alterations or deterioration of the consistency and appearance of food products. For this reason, companies involved in the production, processing, distribution or sale of food products must follow specific rules on food hygiene and adopt the HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points) system. This system, governed by the European Regulation EC 852/2004, contains a set of rules aimed at ensuring the consumer the maximum safety and quality of products. In particular, the legislation defines and regulates:

  • food storage in refrigerators;
  • the temperatures to be used according to the type of food;
  • the hygiene rules to be complied with;
  • the arrangement of the products inside the fridge.

Even food storage must follow very precise rules. The HACCP system dictates guidelines that food business operators (such as warehouse managers or stockers) must comply with. All food storage equipment must also be made of safe and certified materials, as well as easily washable, so as to ensure hygiene, cleanliness and proper storage food.

IFT food technology: 4 essential equipment for food storage and preservation

In order to ensure the perfect preservation and correct storage of food products, it is necessary to use appropriate equipment, specifically designed for contact with food, which allows to preserve freshness and quality, and ensure full compliance with hygiene standards. IFT offers a wide selection of safe and certified plastic equipment for the food industry, ideal for optimizing the drying, freezing, handling and storage of food products such as cheese, fruit and vegetables, meat and sausages, pasta, bread and cakes.

Among the plastic equipment of IFT indispensable for food storage and storage there are definitely:

  • food grade plastic boards made of food polypropylene, in full compliance with EC regulations and directives and the national ministerial decree. They are particularly suitable for the dairy sector but, thanks to their versatility and their specific characteristics, they can adapt to different food processing (for example fish, meat and sausages) maintaining the quality of the products and ensuring effective and safe processes;
  • food drying racks ideal for drying food products such as pasta, fruit or vegetables. Made of polypropylene, they are designed to ensure excellent mechanical strength and high durability, thanks to the use of anti-hydrolysis food polyester nets. They are compatible with wooden and aluminium frames and have a particular injection moulded structure in two pieces, smooth and without ribs, so as not to mark the hands of operators during manual movements;
  • plastic grids, certified according to CE directives for contact with food and designed to facilitate handling and storage processes. Resistant, hygienic and easy to sanitize, they are particularly suitable for the dairy sector (for products such as pecorino, goat cheese, caciotta or tomini), but also for the processing of meat and other food. IFT grids ensure a reduction in the problems related to the formation of unwanted mold and a reduction in the washing and drying time of the equipment, which translates significant economic advantages and savings in operating costs for companies;
  • plastic food trays useful for drying and dehydration of food products such as fruits, vegetables, meat and fish. Lightweight and durable, they are designed to be easily stacked and can be used manually by a single operator within the automatic frame stacking and removal systems.

    For more information on the plastic equipment proposed by IFT for food storage and storage, contact us