Choosing a Conveyor Belt for the Food Processing Industry
The food processing industry is at an all-time high, given that we live in an era where most people practically live on fast foods and confectionary treats. From harvesting to processing, hygiene and sanitation standards in the food processing industry play an important role. This does not only apply to the food itself, but to the equipment used in the process, like conveyer belts.
If you have a food processing business or you’re a food manufacturer looking to maximize production, reduce downtime and production costs, you need to give careful consideration as to which conveyor belts are most suitable for your product and that they meet the relevant health and sanitation standards in place. Conveyor belts are used to transport food through the various production processes. The most popular belt choices are solid flat Industrial Food Grade Conveyor belts and plastic modular belts. The construction of each belt type is different and geared toward specific uses. Each belt has their own set of advantages and disadvantages. Choosing the right belting supplies for your product is important, because it can affect the integrity of your product and effect the time spent on maintenance and sanitization. Let’s have a closer look at each of these belts.
Solid Flat Belt
While there are heavy duty options available, flat conveyor belts are ideal for light or medium loads. They are best suited in fruit, vegetable and raw meat processing lines. They’re can be integrated into the systems that are already in place, because their make-up is rather simple.
However, if the belt is damaged or torn, the entire belt needs to be replaced in most cases and in cases where the conveyor belt is long, this can create a huge problem.
Plastic Modular Belts
Belting Edge Plastic modular belts can carry light, medium and higher load capacities than most of the solid flat belt systems. Although commonly used for bakery goods, packaged poultry and meat, fruit and vegetables, these systems are perfect for sterile applications.
The plastic segments are rather easy to clean and sanitize. They do not retain any liquids or pathogen-harboring substances, making them ideal for pharmaceutical applications too.
They cost a bit more than flat belts initially, but will save you in the long run, because they are made up of individual segments that are interlocked. This means that if one of them get damaged or break, you don’t need to replace the whole belt. Only the damaged segment(s) needs to be replaced. This saves you on costs and time.
Plastic modular belts are more versatile and can be customized, because of their flexibility. They can go up inclines, make turns and go down declines with ease, saving space and maximizing production.