Food Safety Magazine

Sanitation Solutions | February/March 2015

Reduce Sanitizer Costs and Manage HACCP using the LIGHTNING MVP ICON™

By BioControl

Reduce Sanitizer Costs and Manage HACCP using the LIGHTNING MVP ICON™

In today’s day and age, efficiency is key. Whether it’s at home, work or play, we seek to utilize technology to help us minimize our efforts while maximizing our productivity. It should be no surprise then that this same philosophy applies to the food manufacturing industry. In order to quickly turn out the highest quality products, plant and quality assurance managers strive to find testing methods that provide accurate results, reduce costs, and save time. Sound too good to be true? Not quite.

Testing
The LIGHTNING MVP ICON™, BioControl System’s newest innovation in Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points (HACCP) management, features a multi-parameter platform that tests not only for adenosine triphosphate (ATP) but also for pH, temperature, conductivity and chemical concentration. The system’s dashboard software collects data from all parameters in a single-step upload, allowing managers to analyze data critical to HACCP and hygiene monitoring programs in one comprehensive database. This latest development from BioControl combines groundbreaking technology with powerful program management to help producers verify whether proper sanitation has occurred and if their cleaning procedures are effective and in control.

Ensuring proper cleaning and sanitation of a manufacturing environment is a cornerstone of Good Manufacturing Practices and HACCP programs. Testing for ATP, present in all living organisms and most foods, is an efficient method for determining cleaning effectiveness and allows manufacturers to make nearly instantaneous decisions before starting a production line. The MVP ICON combines state-of-the-art detection technology with proprietary reagents that prevent sanitizer interference, allowing for the accurate detection of low levels of ATP on surfaces and providing users confidence that their production lines are truly clean.

“It’s a nice feeling to have our environmental tests go out and have the confidence they’ll come back negative since we know we’ve cleaned so thoroughly and effectively. It’s one thing for a surface to look clean, but when I use the MVP, I know it’s clean,” says an HACCP manager of a ready-to-eat (RTE) meat processor.

Verifying and Documenting
In addition to ATP testing, sanitation managers also need to verify and document their cleaning and sanitizing chemicals are at the correct concentrations to ensure their optimal performance. Sanitizers prepared at too low a concentration are ineffective and can allow for the establishment and growth of unwanted microorganisms. However, when it comes to sanitizers, the “more is better” philosophy does not apply either. Sanitizers prepared at too high a concentration increase costs, adversely affect equipment and may be considered adulterants.

Featuring an accessory probe for the measurement of conductivity and chemical concentration, the MVP ICON is able to accurately determine, within ±5%, if a chemical has been appropriately mixed to its target concentration. Other methods, such as test strips, titration kits and chemical dosing systems, are only accurate to within ±25%, experience subjective result interpretation and are laborious to perform. The conductivity probe’s 20% gain in accuracy provides substantial cost savings for a facility.

“Cleaning and sanitizing chemicals are significant budgetary items. By measuring chemicals precisely, customers can control their use and ensure their dollars are not ‘going down the drain’,” says Traci Fischer, Hygiene Product Manager at BioControl Systems, Inc. “Even in a medium-sized plant, a five percent overuse of these chemicals can amount to tens of thousands of dollars per year in unnecessary expenses.”

The HACCP manager for the RTE meat processor concludes, “I knew a more accurate measurement of our sanitizers would be useful, but I had no idea it would prove its value so quickly. I estimate I’m using 35% fewer sanitizers than before I started using the conductivity probe. Overusing sanitizers by that much runs into big expense. I’m very pleased with the results.”

In addition to reducing chemical costs, the conductivity probe also proves to save time and labor, contributing directly to a reduction in overall sanitation costs. “With the MVP ICON conductivity probe, testing the concentrations of our chemicals has gone from a laborious task to a job that takes half the time. Once programmed, the test points were easy to monitor and track using the dashboard system. Individuals who have used this probe in place of titration kits say that it has made their jobs considerably easier. The money saved in not buying titration chemicals alone has made the investment in BioControl’s MVP ICON unit and conductivity probe worth it,” says a prominent egg producer.

For more information on how the MVP ICON can help your facility reduce costs while managing your HACCP program, please contact BioControl at 800.245.0113 or email at info@biocontrolsys.com.

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