COVID-19: Keeping it out of your food plant – and what to do if it gets in

Such is the nature of the coronavirus beast, food/beverage plants are dealing with an unpredictable environment and risk profiles that could move from low, to high, to shut-down and start-up in a very short time. 

Ecolab, a global leader in hygiene and sanitation, has published three different risk profiles, with accompanying action plans, to help prevent and combat the disease in your food/beverage factory.

It also offers a wealth of information and advice on protocols and programs to get things up and running again should there be an unfortunate outbreak on the premises.

“The coronavirus pandemic is changing the way we interact with and produce food – in so many ways,” comments Irene Neave marketing manager, IMEA, for Ecolab’s Food & Beverage Division.

“That said, food producers are essential service providers and it’s vital that all players work to ensure that a safe and robust food supply is maintained for the public, that their employees are protected and that their business is resilient to the risks.”

There are three plant risk profiles, with accompanying action programs, that Ecolab defines as:

  • Standard Prevention – no known outbreak
  • Risk Reduction – potential exists for an outbreak
  • Remediation – COVID-19 confirmed cases, potential shutdown and re-starting operations

“If the risk profile within a plant changes, it’s necessary to adjust sanitation protocols, firstly, to prevent any infection; secondly, to break the chain of infection should there be an outbreak, and thirdly, then to ensure production can safely recommence,” she explains.

“We have devised comprehensive and detailed guidelines for each stage.”

Here is snapshot outline of these three stages and recommended action plans – advice, she emphasises, that’s informed by public health reports and Ecolab’s global scientific expertise and understanding of the scientific characteristics of prevention, reduction and remediation:

“During the COVID-19 pandemic, maintaining safe production environments, upholding food quality and safety standards and keeping employees safe and healthy remains top priority,” says Neave.

“With the backing of substantial global technical expertise, Ecolab in South Africa is ready to help clients navigate through shifting operational needs during the pandemic and beyond.

“Our teams will ensure you are prepared with accurate and timely information on sanitation guidance and solutions, training and other plant considerations to stay safe – and in business.”

FOR MORE INFORMATION AND HELP: The Ecolab website has a further abundance of information on every aspect of the Coronavirus, COVID-19, and how to mitigate its impact on any food/beverage plant. Click here to access these resources and to contact Ecolab directly….

Source: Ecolab South Africa