In food processing applications, the coating will normally need to be suitable for use in such circumstances. It is important to understand that not all coatings are suitable for food contact use. Some medical and pharmaceutical applications specify coatings that are suitable for use in food contact applications. It is not just applications where the coating comes into contact with a food product that requires this type of coating. In food related packaging, moulding or thermoforming processes, the coating applied to the equipment will also need to be suitable for food contact.
Different types of food processing applications require different types of coating system. For example, a grain hopper would need a coating that can withstand a very aggressive and abrasive environment. A sweet mould would require a totally different type of coating that will allow the very sticky product to easily eject from the mould. Baking tins are another application where the coating would need to withstand the high oven temperatures and be resistant to abrasive bread products and some mechanical damage.
The potential cost savings associated with the application of a fluoropolymer coating can be substantial. The use of expensive oils or release agents can be eliminated and product removal is quicker and more efficient with increased levels of yield, where the product can be ejected or removed without any damage. Cleaning is also much quicker due to the fact that any product residue will be less likely to adhere to the coated surface.
We are often asked if coatings are ‘FDA Approved’. In reality, there is no such thing as a coating Approved by the FDA. There are coatings that are FDA compliant, which means that the substances used in the formulation of the coating system comply with a list of ingredients that the FDA have deemed safe for use in food contact coatings that are processed in a particular way.
We have a complete range of coatings that are suitable for all food contact applications and in circumstances where supporting documentation is required, we can easily obtain a Regulatory Compliance Statement from the coating manufacturer that will certify the food contact status of the coating.