Interesting applications

Production of equipment for the food and catering industry

Along with glass and some plastics, stainless steel is currently virtually the only material that is approved for the production of equipment for food processing, storage and transport. This is due to its compliance with strict requirements in terms of hygiene, toxicity, efficiency and appearance.

Hygiene is of paramount importance in the food industry - at all stages of the food preparation process, starting with the raw material, through the processing up to its delivery to the consumer.

There are strict requirements regarding the solubility of heavy metals from equipment that comes into contact with food. According to European recommendations, the amount of e.g. chromium (Cr) and nickel (Ni) released from stainless steel in the standard ISO 6486/1 test is below 2mg/dm3. For austenitic steel, the released amount of these metals is less than 0.02 mg/dm3, which accounts only for about 1% of the permissible amount.

The stainless steel grades commonly used for the production of equipment for the food and catering industries are 1.4301/1.4307, 1.4401/1.4404, 1.4529, 1.4539, 1.4462. The requirements the materials must meet include: high resistance to corrosion, ease of cleaning, malleability.

Other importance aspects are flawless appearance and smoothness of the steel surface (no cracks, pits or scratches). The standard 2B finishing is usually sufficient, but sometimes electropolishing may be required. Surface roughness (Ra) is usually less than 0.60 um.

Decorative sheets - especially with embossed patterns - are also often used in the production of machinery and equipment for the food industry. Their advantage lies in the smaller contact surface compared to conventional sheet metal, which makes goods move more easily along the production line.


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