When it comes to food and beverage facilities, cleanliness is the highest priority to maintain public health and safety for staff and consumers. Much of the nation’s food safety lies in the hands of the rules and regulations enforced by the FDA, and one of the number one FDA commercial cleaning methods for food and beverage facilities is dry ice blasting, a process utilizing dry ice pellets and compressed air to strip off abrasive materials. Without itself being abrasive, this method eliminates surfaces of grease, crumbs, flour buildup, dust, mold, and even rust without scratching or etching.
Coffee roasters, bakeries, dairy companies, breweries, wineries, candy, spice, snack food manufacturers, and more are all prime candidates for dry ice blasting. All dry ice is food-grade in nature. Sanitation is ensured with the peace of mind that food and beverages won’t be altered by adverse tastes, odors, or toxins. To get into specifics, bakeries, coffee shops, and roasters should consider dry ice cleaning if they have not explored it as best practice already.
Both bakeries and coffee roasters are essential in many cultures around the world, and any commercial cleaning operation causes the nuisance of downtime. However, dry ice cleaning can cut days of cleaning down to mere hours. Equipment does not have to be cooled before starting the cleaning process, there is no prep time for getting started, and clean-up post-clean is also minimal, likely involving vacuuming of debris. But what about wires and electrical components, you might ask? Since dry ice is, well, dry, electrical components can withstand exposure to it, and their function will not be compromised. They might even get an appropriate dusting in the meantime.
Bakery kitchens are quickly caked with flour, oil, grease, frosting, crumbs, and the like. Industrial mixers and ovens, freezers and refrigerators, and preparation countertops require deep cleans over time that will leave them spotless and ready to perform the most efficiently. The intricate nozzle of dry ice blasting machines allows tight spaces and small equipment to get a clean deep enough for smaller appliances like baking molds, pans, and waffle irons to appear as if they are fresh out of the packaging. E-Coli, salmonella, listeria, bacteria, and mold are all killed in this process – another insurance that your business can continue to serve customers and employees with the greatest care.
Coffee shops and roasters, on the other hand, have a unique problem to deal with, and that is that roasters, grinders, and espresso machines are notorious for accumulating excess buildup. Burnt coffee grounds and dust from pipes and ducts can clog the tight spaces of these machines. While wires and brushes are often used to scrub hard to access hardware, dry ice cleaning may be able to limit the more tedious aspects of cleaning roasters altogether. Sometimes coffee roasters must be chipped away, and wire brushes can grind particles into a fine dust. Luckily, these particles are no match for dry ice cleaning machines to reverse, as it does not really “grind,” so much as strip, the particles it is removing.
Using water and chemicals for sanitizing always presents a risk, including the moisture creating an environment for bacteria to grow. And the last thing a roaster wants is to sell a chemically contaminated cup of coffee. Dry ice eliminates these risks, as it doesn’t leave behind water, and it evaporates into the air when warmed to room temperature. Most importantly, it maintains the purity and integrity of every cup.
It is important to remember that ventilation and proper PPE when cleaning with this carbon dioxide based subzero substance is a must. Rocky Mountain Air Solutions recommends gloves, a mask, goggles, and simple plastic coverall are the base recommendations, with running fans or open windows if possible.
In line with RMA’s dedication to providing our customers with flawless dependability, we are expanding our service capabilities in 2022 through a dry ice line that will support dry ice blasting and other applications. We look forward to partnering with you in each of these industrial cleaning applications through this sustainable and environmentally friendly practice. Stay tuned for news regarding our launch timeline!