Know Why Metal Detectable O-rings Find Use in Food and Pharmaceutical Industries
Jan 11, 2023
Food and pharmaceutical are two industries which have to comply with industry standards for hygiene, sanitation, use of safe products, and so on. Each aspect of these two industries, ranging from the actual product and its parts to packaging materials, need to comply with FDA standards. There is zero tolerance for contamination or anything that may jeopardize health and safety. Food processing units also need to comply to industry standards such as FSMA in terms of their equipment, effect of corrosive chemicals on metals, and more. O-rings, gaskets, and seals, widely made of rubber, are very much a part of such equipment. However, with their continuous use, some rubber particles may come off and enter the piping and processing chamber, and may be even in the food product. To avoid this, metal detectable O-rings were developed. These O-rings and seals are made of rubber blended with additives and metallic fillers. This helps metal detection systems easily identify O-ring based contamination. This post discusses the significance of metal detectable seals, O-rings, and more.
Significance of Metal Detectable Seals and O-rings
The basic reason why metal detectable seals are significant
is because they help prevent contamination and further damages. Hence, their demand has grown over the last few years, which is also largely because of FSMA regulation. Here are some relevant pointers.
- Once a metal detector detects any particles or metal fragments, they can be easily removed using magnetic separators. If it is small scale, it can be removed manually as well. This is possible even when the products are packaged in glass, plastic, or aluminum foil.
- Metal detectable rings can be made by blending metallic fillers in usual materials such as nitrile rubber, EPDM, silicone, and more, which are food safe materials as per FDA. These materials can be easily detected by any scanning equipment.
- In the food industry especially, metal detectable O-rings act as sealants as they fit into the grooves of vessel lids and seal the vessel and lid surface.
- Being made of high quality rubber along with metal traces, they are designed to work in harsh environments, abrasive chemicals, and elevated temperatures. This in itself helps prevent contamination inside.
- FDA compliant metal detectable seals are safe, non-toxic, and inhibit fungal and bacterial growth.
- They help prevent huge losses. For instance, if there is contamination using normal O-rings, that entire batch may have to be discarded. This is not the case with metal detectable seals as contaminated ones can be identified easily.
If you are an OEM in the food or pharmaceutical industry, you may require good quality metal detectable O-rings and seals. Ensure you source them from reliable manufacturers and suppliers, and that they are FDA approved. SSP Manufacturing Inc. has a market presence of more than three decades and offer metal detectable O-rings along with a variety of seals and gaskets.