Sliced Bread Recalls – X-ray Solutions For The Bread Industry
Sliced bread is one of the most often found foods in supermarkets. While the basis of bread appears simple, there are several variants on this popular food. Some breads use wheat flour, whereas others use cornmeal or rye flour. Furthermore, different varieties of bread can be baked with yeast or baked at low temperatures to achieve a distinct texture and flavour.
The bread dough goes through multiple processing stages before it eventually is baked, sliced and bagged, ready to be delivered to consumers. As a result, there are numerous chances for contamination throughout the manufacturing process. Contamination can occur because of insufficient worker hygiene or microorganisms in raw materials used to make bread products. Physical contaminants, such as pieces of manufacturing equipment, can cause danger to consumers as well as costly recalls.
To prevent the danger to customers from contaminated bread products, X-ray detection systems are used to detect foreign objects within loaves of bread before they reach the hands of consumers. X-rays are high-energy photons in electromagnetic waves. Most materials allow photons to flow through, but dense materials such as metals, glass and certain plastics cause less photons to pass the material. These variances are then detected by the X-ray system’s detector camera and shown in the grayscale image.
What if something hazardous gets baked into the nooks and crannies during the baking process?
Because raw materials may contain stones and other foreign objects that could harm machinery and survive in the finished product, raw materials possess a risk in food processing. These foreign bodies in baked goods might be stone chips, oven fragments, or even shards of bread cutter. Foreign items such as foil or aluminium may be introduced into the finished products during production and packing. Because harmful contamination may end up in the bread during the bread production process, it is critical that each bag of sliced bread passes through the X-ray equipment.
The physical contaminants can often be invisible to the human eye, and without any proper control method, it’s difficult to be certain that the contamination risk is adequately eliminated or reduced.
The worst-case scenario is to receive a complaint from a consumer claiming to have found a physical contaminant in your sliced bread. This could result in serious damage to the consumer’s health and also turn into a massive product recall if the contamination concerns multiple products or batches. A recall can cause long-term damage to the brand image and decrease sales revenue in the B2B context as well.
MEKI systems provide excellent traceability
Traceability means that if it is discovered that the bread is contaminated, a highly focused and exact recall, in which only the affected production batch is recalled, is conceivable. As a result, food processors may save time and money in these stressful conditions by not having to, for example, recall an entire day’s or week’s production.
The advantages of using MEKI X-rays in this application include:
- Flexible – X-ray systems can be used in applications where other methods cannot be implemented due to some limitations such as packaging material.
- Fast – Since the X-ray inspection is installed in production line it does not cause any haults in production. Inspect food products and remove the non-conforming ones quickly and accurately from your production line
- Accurate – MEKI™ system allows you to detect even the smallest metal contaminants, stone fragments and glass splinters, and a variety of other foreign objects, resulting in 100% food quality control.
- Optimized – MEKI software allows us to fine-tune the settings to meet the needs and wants of each individual customer.
- Automated – When the MEKI system detects a missing clip, it rejects it automatically. Products without clips are rejected in a different container than contaminated products.
Get your bread together!
Food industry standards are tightening, and today’s customer expects quality to come first at all times. Contaminated or insufficient products may be hazardous. Product recalls and potential claims are extremely costly and harm the manufacturer’s brand.
Manufacturers provide extra value to their customers by using X-ray technology. Not only can they guarantee that their products are free of foreign bodies of different sorts, such as glass, metal, stones, bones, and plastic, but they can also guarantee that their products are high-quality and safe to eat without any doubts whatsoever.
Why Select Mekitec X-ray to inspect your sliced bread?
According to Richard Oetelmans, the operator at Verkade, the reason why he likes MEKI systems is: "Mekitec’s system filters things that don’t belong in the biscuit, like glass, iron, and other metals. The machine does this by using X-ray technology. Mekitec’s X-ray system is great – it’s compact, small, and easy to handle for all operators."