Preventing Breakdowns of Snack Food Processing Equipment

Every snack food processing plant wants to ensure its production output is continually operating at maximum efficiency, while maintaining standards for quality, safety, and cleanliness. Unfortunately, there are three potential problems that can throw a wrench in your snack food production.

By properly maintaining your processing equipment, you can to prevent these three potential problems from taking place, keeping your equipment running safely and smoothly.

Potential Problem #1: Unsafe or Unsanitary Equipment

Safety and cleanliness are the top priorities of every snack food processor. The well-being of your employees and your customers should always be at the forefront of every operational decision and task.

Always follow FDA (U.S. Food & Drug Administration) and OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) mandatory safety regulations and guidelines. Encourage your employees to do the same by providing ongoing training. Consider offering incentives for meeting or exceeding workplace goals.

If an incident or near miss does take place, document every detail and report it immediately. Don’t punish an employee who reports an incident; it will only encourage others to not report. Learn from mistakes and improve your systems to guarantee the same mistakes won’t be repeated in the future.

Potential Problem #2: Parts or Equipment Failure

The most important thing you can do to prevent the failure of specific components or an entire process is to purchase only high-quality products from an experienced, reputable supplier. Choose industry-specific equipment that offers extended warranties. It is also necessary to purchase proper breakdown insurance coverage to protect your plant financially should operations slow down or cease due to an equipment malfunction.

Regularly scheduled maintenance will go a long way in preventing problems from happening in the first place. Also, schedule periodic inspections for normal wear and tear of each component.

If possible, stock spare parts such as wires, cables, and shear pins so that if one fails, your production can get started again quickly.

Potential Problem #3: Lower Productivity and Throughput

Even if your equipment doesn’t experience an outright failure and cessation of operations, lower productivity and throughput has the potential to significantly increase your expenses and decrease your profits.

Keep your production schedule running at optimal speed by performing the following tasks:

  • Use a computer-based product control system specific to your industry. With every individual process being automated and carefully monitored, most errors and delays will be eliminated. There will be an increase in accuracy and operational safety and you will be producing at a higher rate.

  • Choose electrical and mechanical components that will stand up to the rigorous environment of ingredients, chemicals, heat, water, and continuous operations.

  • Calibrate your equipment, gauges, scales, and measuring devices to obtain accurate readings.

  • Provide ongoing training to your machine operators to keep processes efficient and  extend the life of your processing equipment.

By taking care of your snack food processes and preventing these three potential problems, your investment in equipment will pay off for many years to come.

For more ways to prevent problems and breakdowns of your snack food processing equipment, visit APEC today.

Establishing, Encouraging, and Enforcing Safety Guidelines for Automated Processing Equipment

Working with automated processing equipment can be dangerous. In fact, in 2014 the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the manufacturing industry as having 125,990 nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses involving days away from work. As an employer, it is your responsibility to ensure the safety of your employees on the job so that injury can be avoided.

The consequences of having an employee injured on the job are numerous but can include:

  • Stopping or slowing down of processing

  • Paying for sick leave while an injured employee recovers

  • Working without the appropriate number of employees

  • Making a Workers Comp insurance claim

  • Opening your company up to lawsuits or legal actions

Due to these and other consequences, it is vitally important that automated processing equipment safety guidelines are established, encouraged, and enforced.

Establish Appropriate Safety Guidelines

The first step in establishing appropriate safety guidelines is to identify every possible hazard when it comes to working with and alongside processing equipment. Falls, cuts, and even amputations are possible when safe practices aren’t followed.

Is the processing equipment inspected and maintained regularly? Are safety guards in place? Is there an automatic turn-off mechanism that shuts the machinery down if it detects a problem? Is the plant 100% compliant with every OSHA (Occupational Safety & Health Administration) safety regulation? Are these regulations posted where they are easily seen and in clear language?

The next step goes beyond OSHA compliance by making additional safety rules that are appropriate and reasonable for the conditions in which your employees are working every day. Examples of such rules are dress codes, rest break policies, specific processing protocol, and accident reporting requirements.

Encourage Your Employees

Once you’ve established appropriate safety guidelines, your employees must be encouraged to follow them. They will be more likely to do so if you have set rules that are necessary, justifiable, and beneficial. If overly restrictive rules are in place, employees will perceive them negatively and might be reluctant to abide by them.

It may be helpful get your employees’ input regarding workplace safety rules. Since they are working alongside the machinery every day, they may have some specific insight that is relevant to their safety.

Educating your employees on both the hazards and the rules in place to avoid them will go a long way to increasing compliance rates. Providing ongoing training and conducting mock disasters will give employees the knowledge and practice required to respond appropriately should an incident occur.

Enforcing The Rules

Yes, rules need to be enforced. However, one of the most dangerous things you can do as an employer is to impose disciplinary measures if an employee reports an incident, violates a safety rule, or is injured while not following safety guidelines. If your employees are afraid to make a report and therefore fail to do so, violations may never be known and oversights might never be investigated and mitigated.

Although not always necessary, implementing a safety management system can help focus efforts of enforcing rules and preventing injuries. Some items that can be included in a safety checklist can include:

  • Conduct routine and surprise inspections.

  • Reevaluate policies and procedures each time there is a change in process, materials, or machinery.

  • Implement a hazard and incident reporting system.

  • Investigate all accidents and near misses to determine their root cause.

  • Recognize employees for safe work practices.

By creating a culture where reporting an incident or injury is a protected act and by accepting your own responsibility in ensuring your employees’ safety, you are doing your part to keep them healthy and uninjured on the job.

Making Animal Feed Safer with Processing Equipment

Ensuring the safety and nutritional value of animal feed, mixed feed, medicated feed, aqua feed, pet food, treats, and chews is the number one priority of animal feed manufacturers and is necessary when producing consumable goods.

Here’s a detailed look how this priority is met when using high-quality processing equipment to increase accuracy, expand production, and solve potential problems.

Increasing Accuracy

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration states that “Feed and feed ingredient manufacturers have a legal responsibility to ensure that every ingredient used in their products is safe for its intended use, and their products are not adulterated or misbranded.”

Manufacturers are also “responsible for producing safe feed and pet food, and for following FDA regulations” for safe and nutritious consumption. These regulations include the safety of “grains, milling byproducts, vitamins, minerals, fats/oils, and other nutritional and energy sources” as well as “enzymes, processing aids, anti-caking agents, stabilizers, and food and color additives” used in the processing of animal feed.

Due to the serious nature of complying with strict FDA animal feed safety standards, it’s imperative that high-quality, easily monitored processing equipment is used in the production of consumable goods. Doing so also decreases imprecise processes and careless mistakes.

High-grade processing equipment will help increase accuracy by allowing:

  • Less breakage due to proper handling of delicate ingredients and finished products

  • Consistent liquid application even for difficult coatings such as micro liquids (enzymes, mold inhibitors, etc.)

  • High-quality packaging and labeling that reduces waste and spoilage

With proper processing machinery, manufacturers will be better equipped to exceed every safety standard and meet every measurement of accuracy.

Expanding Productivity

If expanding productivity (and profits as a result) is your goal, there are four ways processing equipment can aid you in this endeavor. They are:

  1. Reducing the labor required to produce quality feed by delivering intuitive monitoring processes which can be observed easily and consistently.

  2. Quickly and accurately moving ingredients, additives, and finished products through the entire process by using an error-free inventory tracking system.

  3. Fulfilling orders quickly and gaining satisfied customers with proper packaging, accurate labeling, and speedy shipping.

  4. Allowing for intelligent strategies to be planned and implemented by giving detailed reports on production, inventory, and costs.

When processing equipment integrates these controls and reports, they allow an expanded productivity that wouldn’t otherwise be possible.

Solving Problems

With proper processing equipment, problems can be predicted and solved before they have a chance to take place. Feed productions will go smoothly and efficiently when the equipment includes the following capabilities:

  • Precise monitoring and managing of processes

  • Components that are easily maintained and durable

  • Tracking that allows compliance with FDA standards

  • Barcode ingredient confirmation

  • Lot tracking

  • Noting of expiration dates

  • Easily maintained inventory

  • Quality control

  • Time and date stamping

  • Detailed reports of usage and production outcomes

With start-to-finish solutions that combine correct methods and controls, the results are a superior product, satisfied customers, and a more profitable business.

For more information on animal feed processing equipment, contact APEC today.

The Evolution of Food Processing Equipment

Mincing, macerating, liquefying, emulsifying, cooking, pickling, pasteurizing, preserving, and packaging. Those are all tasks done by processing equipment in the transformation of raw ingredients, by physical or chemical means, into snack food that is fit for consumption.

Let’s take a look back through the history of food processing and the evolution it has taken from the simple hermetic bottling techniques of the early 1800s all the way to the modern, highly efficient machines of today.

The Crude Processing of Prehistoric Ages

Dating back to the prehistoric ages, although the processes used for preserving food were crude, they worked well enough for the needs at the time.

Basic methods of preservation included sun drying, fermenting (the chemical breakdown of a substance by bacteria, yeasts, or other microorganisms, typically involving effervescence and the giving off of heat), and various cooking methods such as roasting, smoking, and steaming.

Archeological Evidence From Ancient Civilizations

The existence of salt preservation during ancient times are evidenced in the writings of the Greek, Chaldean, Egyptian, and Roman civilizations as well as from other parts of the world. Drawing out the moisture that causes decay, salted meat was commonly used for feeding warriors and sailors who didn’t have access to fresh produce and meats.

Developments of the19th Century

Hermetic bottling techniques were invented in 1809 by a French chef, confectioner, and distiller by the name of Nicolas Appert. “Using corked-glass containers reinforced with wire and sealing wax and kept in boiling water” gave the ability to preserve soups, fruits, and dairy products among other foods. He won a 12,000-franc award for his method which he used to establish the first commercial cannery in 1812.

Appert also helped develop the bouillon tablet (dehydrated stock), devised an alkaline gelatin extraction method, and perfected an autoclave (a strong, heated container used for chemical reactions using high pressures and temperatures, e.g., steam sterilization).

Canned goods first appeared during this time but were somewhat hazardous due to the lead used in the cans. The patent for this method was granted by King George III to Peter Durand in 1810. By 1818, The Royal Navy was using nearly 24,000 large cans on its ships each year. The canned vegetables were a great relief to sailors who were often plagued by scurvy caused by a deficiency of vitamin C in salt-cured foods.

Another big step in the processing evolution came in 1864 with the discovery of pasteurization by Louis Pasteur. This method uses heat to destroy pathogens in milk, juice, wine, and beer.

The Rising Consumer Society of the 20th Century

Between the soldiers’ needs during both World Wars and the economic boost that occurred afterward, demand for processed foods increased dramatically. The rise of a busy, consumeristic society increased the production of convenience foods.

The following methods were developed to aid in the advancement of food processing and preserving:

  • Frozen foods that can be defrosted and microwaved

  • Spray drying (quickly evaporating a solvent uniformly over food)

  • Freeze drying (rapidly freezing food and then subjecting it to a high vacuum to remove ice)

  • Dried, instant soup mixes

  • Juice concentrates (the removal of water)

  • Artificial sweeteners

  • Coloring agents

  • Sodium benzoate as a preservative

The Modern Machines of Today

Today, high-speed, highly efficient modern machines are used to process the bulk of the world’s food. By carefully measuring, chopping, mixing, coating, and packaging food items, the equipment functions as a self-contained unit that effectively minimizes labor and waste.

From toxin and defect removal to preservation and proper packaging, processing equipment ensures food is safe to be eaten by the masses, even after long delivery and storage durations. Because of cutting-edge technology, APEC’s food processing equipment has enabled production to speed up faster than ever before.

For more information on food processing equipment, contact APEC today.

How to Prevent Problems and Breakdowns of Your Animal Feed Processing Equipment

The last thing you want is to lose efficiency and money with downtime caused by broken equipment. Instead, learn how to prevent problems by making wise purchases and properly maintaining your animal feed processing equipment.

Buy High-Quality Equipment

The most important way to prevent a breakdown is to purchase high-quality equipment that can withstand the heavy use and rigors of feed processing. Also, when equipment is customized specifically to your manufacturing needs, there will be fewer errors in use and a lower chance of breakdown.

It’s important that you acquire your animal feed processing equipment from a company with a long track record of high-quality products and excellent customer service. You’ll save yourself a lot of headaches if you look for a supplier who offers the following:

  • Personal service with a 24-hour support line
  • Insightful, innovative options
  • A reputation of experience and expertise
  • High customer satisfaction
  • Extended warranties
  • Equipment and service discounts
  • Expedited delivery of replaced parts

When you purchase the right equipment from the right supplier, you’ll have the best chance of preventing problems and breakdowns and receiving quick service if one does happen to occur.

Use a Product Control System

When you use an industry-specific, computer-based product control system, you can eliminate most user errors and make complex programming and processes more manageable and convenient. Automated systems allow for exact control, proper handling of ingredients, a significant increase in accuracy, and operational safety.

With a control system, your equipment will be able to produce at a higher rate without risking the chance of problems or breakdowns since every process is carefully programmed and monitored.

Follow a Maintenance Program

It’s recommended that you follow a scheduled maintenance program to maximize the chance that an impending problem will be caught before it causes a serious issue. The schedule should include an examination of the following items:

  • Valves
  • Gaskets
  • O-rings
  • Pumps
  • Screens
  • Filters
  • Heat exchanger plates

Remember to wash and sanitize all tools before they are used for maintenance and after examination and maintenance have taken place. Clean and sanitize all equipment prior to restarting production.

Clean and Sanitize

To minimize the potential for contamination, it’s imperative that a strict sanitation program is implemented, followed, and recorded. Review the recommended sanitation standard operating procedure (SSOP) written by the FDA and be sure to use sanitizers that have been approved by the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). Make the detailed schedule readily available to all cleaning personnel.

Along with keeping the feed healthy and safe for animals, following these guidelines will also help your equipment last longer.

Insure

Equipment breakdown insurance can be obtained and covers the cost of mechanical breakdowns, damage caused by power surges, operator error, and business interruption costs.

Some insurance carriers will help you prevent breakdowns from happening by offering infrared testing, inspections, assistance in sourcing replacements, batch testing, recordkeeping, product identification services, and more. Talk to your insurance agent for more details.

For more information on high-quality animal feed processing equipment, contact APEC today.

4 Innovation Tips From the Manufacturing Industry to the Food Industry

The manufacturing industry has faced enormous challenges over the last 50 years, and has been forced to adapt. For example, over the last two decades the industry has shifted largely toward manufacturing of computers and electronics. Advances and innovation in technology has largely facilitated this move, although other sectors such as car manufacturers have suffered.

Similarly, due to economic and environmental changes, the food industry is facing challenges on a similar scale. A growing population, a warming climate, and shrinking natural resources will force farmers and the food industry as a whole to innovate or get left in the dust.

Farmers and people in the food industry, such as pet food and animal feed manufacturers, are no strangers to challenging circumstances and lean times. However, here are 4 innovation tips from the manufacturing industry that could help you successfully face new challenges head.

1. Hire Tomorrow’s Leaders

The challenges facing the food industry are unfolding right now, but many of the effects won’t be truly felt for decades. The leaders who will be navigating these challenges are just now starting to work their way up the ranks.

To be truly innovative, you need to invest in your greatest resource: your employees. Tomorrow’s leaders will need to be passionate, understanding of their roles, and have the ability to communicate effectively and take control when necessary.

2. Develop New Technologies

Today, a single farmer in the US is responsible for feeding 155. By 2050 that number will rise to 232 people per farmer.

In order for the food industry to produce more food on the same amount of land with finite resources will require new technologies and improvements on existing processes. Additionally, every step of the supply chain can be improved and made to be more efficient, less wasteful, and more sustainable. For example, APEC’s Mistcoater uses new spinning disk technology to coat food, resulting in less downtime and a more consistent product.

3. Manage Risks

To properly innovate your business, you must take risks. These risks should still be strategically managed, so you can protect your bottom line while making the necessary steps for success.

Risks facing the food industry include equipment failure, spoilage, contamination, natural forces, and much more, any of which could eat into your profits and put your company at risk. One way to mitigate these risks is with the proper commercial insurance coverage. You can also commit to investing in only the highest-quality equipment for your processes.

4. Look to the Future

The most successful companies in the world, such as Apple and Nike, are the ones that aren’t afraid to reinvent themselves. They are focused on meeting the needs of their customers in the future as well as in the present.

The food industry has already shown how it can reinvent its processes to streamline food production and serve more people. However, the temptation to stick with what you know and be adverse to taking risks is still there–fight it. As the population grows, pet food, animal feed, snack food, cereal companies, and all facets of the food industry need to look toward the future and innovate and adjust based on emerging trends.

To learn how APEC can help take you into the future of pet food, animal feed, and food processing, contact us today.

How to Prepare for the Digital Age in Pet Food Processing

The digital age has brought monumental advancements in the way we live our lives — many of which we take for granted every single day. However, the pet food processing industry hasn’t advanced quite as rapidly since extrusion technologies were developed in the 1950s.

That’s been changing in recent years.

While pet food processing techniques have been highly successful for decades, increased challenges have put pressure on the industry to adapt and change at a quicker pace. To face these challenges, pet food manufacturers are bringing their processes into the digital age.

New Challenges Facing Pet Food Manufacturers

In just the last 5 years, pet food manufacturers have been faced with new challenges, including the following:

  • Unprecedented growth of the specialty pet food market
  • More demand for high-meat content
  • Higher demand for natural ingredients
  • Increased pet food safety regulations
  • Constant advances in technology, leading to outdated equipment

These new changes are straining the tried-and-true pet food manufacturing processes that have worked so well in past decades. With the increased demand for specialty pet food, manufacturers must formulate and test new pet food products more often. Without a fast and flexible way to tweak and modify formulas, this can add to costly down-time on the factory floor, where time is money.

Your business’s ability to face these challenges head on can make the difference between seeing soaring profits, or watching your margins disappear. You need a solution that is flexible, affordable, versatile, and won’t be outdated next year.

Bringing Pet Food Processing into the Digital Age with Ingredient Automation

In order to bring your pet food processing into the digital age, you need ingredient automation. This technology allows you to use sophisticated software and automation systems that monitor and adjust ingredients in real time, as your pet food products are being produced.

With an ingredient automation system, you can meet the ever-evolving demands of the pet food industry with equipment that doesn’t become instantly outdated the minute it’s installed. APEC’s BatchBox provides a solution for pet food processing companies to track ingredients from a single interface, giving you the power to make adjustments easily and instantly.

With ingredient automation, it’s easier to test new formulas, track raw ingredients to avoid spoilage, and eliminate costly downtime.

What the Future Holds in Store for the Industry

Don’t get left in the dust of your competitors. It’s time to modernize your pet food processing equipment with ingredient automation, so you can adjust to industry trends, anticipate new opportunities to add value to your products, and grow your profit margins without growing costs.

To learn more about process automation, contact APEC today.

Excellence Is in the Details: How to Get the Most out of Your Processing Equipment

Your processing equipment can make or break your success. The downtime that comes from a breakage (not to mention the secondary issues like spoiled raw materials) is enough to make any business owner or manager see red. How can you avoid this scenario? How can you make sure you get the most out of your processing equipment?

Do Everything You Can to AVOID Breakages

This means staying on top of maintenance. Just as you’ll take the time to keep your car engine maintained by regularly scheduling oil changes, it’s important to schedule maintenance checks into the routine of your operation.Regularly inspect all of the components of the equipment, and replace worn-out parts. And remember to lubricate your equipment. In addition, maintain accuracy in proportionate mixing and weighing of products by regularly calibrating your equipment to keep your gauges in alignment.Keep a log to make sure you’re covering everything on time, every time. APEC’s automated processing equipment offers a control system that removes the chance of user error by tracking and recording the process for you.

Equipment Maintenance: Time it Right

Look at the big picture, and analyze your needs when determining how often to schedule maintenance.

Just because a manufacturer suggests a maintenance every six months doesn’t mean your equipment needs to be maintained that often. If you only use the piece of equipment for a few days during that time, you can likely extend the duration between maintenances.

Likewise, make sure you’re performing the required maintenances often enough for the workhorses of your factory.

Train Employees to Do Basic Maintenance and Repair

Cut down on time spent waiting for someone with knowledge to show up and fix a small issue. Train your employees to clean equipment, inspect machines and their parts, and perform basic repairs.

In addition, keep spare parts on hand. In the event of a breakage, you can get your processing equipment back on line much faster when you have the required parts available to you.

Inspection

Make sure you’re routinely inspecting your processing equipment to stay on top of issues and catch problems before they turn into disasters. Review your maintenance procedures every year, and adjust as you go.

Schedule at Optimum Times

It sounds like a no-brainer, but remember to schedule your maintenance during downtime. Your equipment will be out of service for a time, so make sure you choose the time when it’s least needed.

Learn More About Getting the Most Out of Your Processing Equipment through APEC

APEC’s design in automated processing equipment delivers a nearly 0% breakage rate, in addition to a control system that manages your maintenance schedule for you. Gain time and peace of mind.  Call us at (616) 374-1000 or fill out a form to request information today.

4 Tips for Improving Efficiency in your Processing Plant

When it comes to your processing plant, even a small improvement in efficiency can reap big rewards. Being more efficient means you can do more with less – which translates into increased profits with lower overhead.

And the magical part is that there’s always a way to improve efficiencies, no matter how high-tech and fine-tuned your processes. So if you’re struggling to get the most out of your processing systems, here are 4 tips from the processing equipment experts at APEC.

1. Increase Uptime – Reduce Downtime

Your processing plant is at its most efficient when it’s up and running and producing a robust output.

When is it at its least efficient? When the process is halted for maintenance and repairs.

Reducing downtime and increasing uptime is the best path to improve efficiency. One way to do this is with the help of high quality equipment such as APEC’s Mistcoater. The Mistcoater uses spinning disks, which apply liquids to dry solids in a continuous flow without the pesky nozzles that are notorious for clogging.

The Mistcoater is just one way to reduce the need for time-wasting and profit-sucking repairs and maintenance. Other approaches include:

  • Implementing a strategic maintenance schedule
  • Improving employee training
  • Investing in back-up equipment

2. Improve Formula Control

Formula control is crucial when it comes to food processing. Even in the pet food and animal feed industries, getting your formula just right and responding to changing tastes can help you set yourself apart from your competitors.

By improving your formula control, you’re reducing the time it takes for you to adjust and make changes. With APEC’s BatchBox, you’re put in the control seat. It’s easily integrated with most major brands of processing equipment and scale instruments, and it allows you to make instant changes to formulas. With an intuitive “point and click” interface, tweaking your formulas was never easier.

3. Improve Traceability

Being able to trace ingredients, raw products, and everything that is in storage or getting shipped out of the warehouse is critical for food processing plants. For one thing, it helps you manage your inventory and avoid unnecessary waste. It also improves customer support, as you respond to concerns and complaints from your clients.

APEC helps you improve ingredient traceability with our barcode scanning and ingredient confirmation systems, standard in many of our processing equipment and available to add on to many others.

4. Integrate Automation into Processing Systems

It’s a fact of life that machines are simply better at doing some things than humans. If this weren’t the case, we’d still be stuck in the stone age.

One effective way to improve your processing plant’s efficiency is to take it into the future with process automation. While you’ll never eliminate the need for highly-skilled employees (why would you want to?) the evolving food processing industry requires you to stay ahead of the curve with ingredient automation.

 

APEC can help take your business into the future with our automated pet food processing equipmentanimal feed processing equipment, and customized industry solutions. Contact us today to learn more.

4 Changes You Can Make to Keep Up With the Healthy Pet Food Trend

There’s a growing trend in the pet food industry toward healthy products, with specialty pet food products appearing on supermarket shelves worldwide. According to Packaged Facts, growth in natural, organic, and eco-friendly pet food is expected to be near-exponential, with predictions that sales will eclipse traditional pet food within 5 years.
It appears that healthy pet food is more than just a trend – it’s here to stay. Here are 4 ways your pet food processing business can stay ahead of the curve.

1. Follow trends for “people food”

The current healthy pet food trend can be attributed to similar trends with people food. Consumers have shown that they’re willing to pay more for organic, natural, whole foods that are better for their health. And since people love their pets like family, it makes sense that they would want the same quality of food for their dogs, cats, and other pets that they would want for themselves.

2. Test new pet food formulas

Since your customers will be looking for new and exciting healthy pet food products, it’s a good opportunity to test out new formulas. However, you need to be able to make adjustments without disrupting your manufacturing output.
APEC can help with our fully-automated BatchBox batch control system. It gives you complete control over mixers, metered liquids, inventory, and formula management. Basically, you can test out new formulas using the BatchBox’s intuitive interface, without disrupting your factory’s workflow.

3. Upgrade your pet food coating equipment

Animal health experts recommend pet food that is rich in moisture, and it’s becoming more difficult to convince pet owners to purchase pet food in the form of dry pellets.
Moisture rich pet food formulas often include ingredients such as slurries that are difficult to work with when using traditional coating systems because the spray nozzles get easily clogged. With APEC’s Mistcoater, you can apply liquids to dry solids, with the use of spinning discs that are easier to clean and maintain than spray nozzles.

4. Improve ingredient tracking and product safety

To keep up with healthy pet food trends, you’re likely to use a more diverse set of ingredients in your formulas. You will most likely use some raw food along with ingredients with “active” ingredients like enzymes. Because of this, you’ll face a greater risk of contamination and waste.
In order to maintain the safety and integrity of your healthy pet food products, you’ll need improved ingredient tracking. Some ways to do this include:
  • Bar code confirmation
  • Lot tracking of ingredients
  • Monitoring of expiration dates, as well as “first in/first out” tracking
  • Time and date stamping for every transaction
To improve product safety, you need to clean and maintain your equipment to the highest standards. One way to improve in this area is with APEC’s pet food processing equipment, which is engineered for easy cleaning and maintenance. Call us today for more information!