Printable verification of HPP on individual packs | 17-09-2019 |
Recently High Pressure Processing (HPP) has undergone strong growth as it enables packaged foods and beverages to retain natural flavours and be free of preservatives over extended periods. HPP can keep consumers safe from harmful bacteria such as salmonella and listeria. Until now the gap in that process has been the inability to inspect individual packages to identify where the HPP process might have failed.
Chromatic Technologies Inc (CTI) has introduced its second generation of printable BlindSpotz™ HPP verification technology. At the individual unit level, the technology can differentiate between packages processed at 70K psi, 80K psi and 87K psi.
Identifying an individual failed package has significant economic advantages compared to eliminating an entire run of prepared foods following the vessel exposure to the HPP process, says CTI. A typical protein or juice product is processed through HPP at 87K psi for three minutes. Failure to hit that target pressure results in substantial risk of harmful contamination.
BlindSpotz™ prints a clear message/image and then a blue colour appears when the proper target is reached. To make it easy to use in a production environment, a reference colour is used for comparison. If the HPP verification ink is lighter than the reference color, the package is easily identified as ‘failed’ in the process. For more rigorous or automated systems, the precision of a ‘vision system’ is used to measure the colour to ensure an objective analysis.
“Customers pushed us hard for a smart, affordable technology that could validate the initiation of the kill step of the most dangerous bacteria during the HPP process. This makes it easy to identify - at the individual package level - if something failed,” said Lyle Small, CTI’s founder and CEO. “An HPP failure is a safety hand grenade waiting to explode for brands and retailers. The HPP machines are very smart at detecting problems, but they don’t provide the inspection of individual packages.”
There are three ways to use the HPP validation technology: (1) an HPP badge can be used in every tote (or basket) of packs to confirm success and can be retained for safety records, (2) stickers can be applied to individual packs and (3) printed on the packs as part of existing printing process.
The BlindSpotz™ technology is deployed across protein, juice, and sauce product lines in Chile, France, Spain, Mexico, as well as within the USA.
HPP eliminates bacteria through high-pressure rather than traditional pasteurization which can degrade the taste and nutritional value of foods and beverages. It can be used for both organic as well as natural foods. Additionally, HPP can be conducted at refrigerated temperatures and does not alter heat-sensitive foods such as meats, fruits and vegetables.