The world of industrial lubricants can be a complex one. With so many types of lubricants, all with different functions, it can be hard to determine which industrial lubricant to use. We have created this blog with the purpose of helping you choose which lubricant will work best for your food processing facility. Below are our answers to some frequently asked questions about food grade lubricants. If you can't find your question below or have additional questions after reading, please give us a call at 1-905-752-LUBE (5823). We are happy to help.
What is food grade lubricant?
Food grade lubricant is a non hazardous industrial product that must be used in food processing facilities to ensure operators and consumers remain safe in the event of an accidental lubricant contamination. These lubricants are non-toxic, so if there is an accidental contamination under specified thresholds, such as in a bread production line, any lubricants that may come in contact with food product, may not harm end users.
Why Should I Use Food Grade Lubricant?
Food grade lubricant plays a significant role in preventing costly contamination caused by spillage in food processing facilities. If contamination remains below allowable thresholds, food product affected by contamination or spillage remains safe to consume if food grade lubricant is used. This reduces the risk of having an expensive recall. In the case of a lubricant contamination where a food processing facility chose not to use food grade lubricant, the company will have to recall the product due to the risks the contamination will have on consumers health. These recalls are expensive, time consuming and damage the brand reputation of the company. Imagine the hassle and critiques your company would have to go through if there was a NON-food grade lubricant contamination?! Not only would this cost you an arm and a leg, but the worst part is, the cost could of been completely avoided if you had just used food grade lubricant in the first place! Corporate management does not want to see their company on the news for making all of their consumers sick. This will hurt the reputation of your company and hurt the innocent consumers who consumed that batch of product.
This is why food grade lubricant is the best choice of lubricant to use. By using food grade lubricant, companies can ensure that they take control of any potential incidents, while making the ethical decision to choose the lubricant they know is safer.
Do My Products Require the Use of Food Grade Lubricant?
If you manufacture any products in the categories below the answer is 100% YES! The National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) states that food grade lubricant should be used in the production of medicines and all food and beverage products, including pet food and animal feed. Food grade lubricant should be used when producing cosmetics as there is a chance that they might be consumed as they are applied directly to the face and mouth region. To read more information of NSF standards or to find out if the lubricant you're using is food grade, click here.
What is the difference between H1, H2 and H3 food grade lubricants? Which one should I use?
At Chain Guard, we strongly encourage the use of H1. We are motivated to provide only H1 Food Grade Lubricants because they are the safest for consumers. Click here to read more about our vision and why we hope you'll care about using H1 lubricants too. However, if you are unsure what the differences are between these types of lubricant, grease or oils or need more information to be convinced that using a H1 is the right choice for you, keep reading.
Although H1, H2 and H3 lubricants are all food grade, they are NOT all created for the same purpose. It can be hard to choose which type of food grade lubricant you need. At Chain Guard, we believe picking H1 food grade lubricant is always the best and an easy choice. However, if you are unsure what the purpose of H1, H2 and H3 lubricants are, we've got you covered.
What is an H3 Lubricant?
H3 lubricants can be thought of as edible oils, like sunflower oil for example. They are most often applied on trolleys, hooks or other facility equipment. The main purpose of H3 lubricants is to prevent rust from developing on equipment. Although H3 lubricants can be consumed in the case of an actual lubricant contamination, if you are looking for a lubricant to help improve machine function or keep your oven chains moving, H3 lubricants are not overly reliable. In the event of contamination below allowable thresholds using an H3 product, the food product may be considered safe for the end user, but the taste, color or smell of the product might be affected.
What is an H2 Lubricant?
An NSF certified H2 lubricant does not contain elements such as mutagens, teratogens, carcinogens, mineral acids. H2 lubricants also do not contain heavy metals, like mercury or selenium for instance. H2 lubricants have to follow very strict rules regarding toxicology. Toxicology involves the nature, effects and detection of poisons. H2 lubricants cannot contain the elements mentioned above because in case of accidental consumption these harmful elements can result in illness. Since H2 lubricants do not contain these harmful elements, they are considered to be food grade. However, they are not safe in case of a lubricant contamination. Although the H2 lubricants do not contain poisonous ingredients, they still contain ingredients that are harmful to consumers if contaminated with the food, beverage or cosmetic product. Essentially, accidentally consuming an H2 lubricant can be harmful to a consumer. This is why H2 lubricants are only used on equipment in food process facilities that do not actually come in contact with food. Some examples of equipment H2 lubricants are used on are trolleys, forklifts, hooks, etc.
What is an H1 Lubricant?
An NSF certified H1 lubricant is considered the safest of all lubricating products offered on the market. As such they are used on equipment where accidental lubricant contamination may occur. H1 lubricants are odorless, tasteless and are acceptable for accidental contamination with a food product of up to 10 parts per million. When you hear someone in the industry referring to "food grade lubricant", they are most often referring to an H1 registered lubricating product as these H1 lubricants are considered to be the only lubricants that can keep consumers truly safe in the event of contamination within allowable thresholds. H1 lubricants are most often applied to oven chains, conveyer belt systems, pumps, mixers, gears, hydraulics, and much more. At Chain Guard, we firmly believe H1 lubricant should be the ONLY option in food processing facilities. Due to modern day advances, H1 food grade lubricant now works just as effectively as other lubricant types, but ensures they safety of consumers, where the others do not. H1 lubricants protect the health of consumers AND protect the companies who use them.
Using H1 lubricants can reduce and/or eliminate the risk of having an expensive recall and getting negative publicity that will damage brand reputation. When faced with the choice of which lubricant to use, H1 can keep you and your consumers safe. Click here to see the types of H1 food grade lubricants we offer.
Are you still unsure what industrial lubricant you should use? We can help you! Click the button below to submit your company details in our form. We will contact you with free advise on which type of industrial lubricant would be best for you.
By choosing to use an H1 lubricant, you can help keep your business and customers safer in the event of an accidental lubricant contamination. If an H1 lubricant gets contaminated with your food, beverage or cosmetic product under 10 parts per million, you will not have to recall the batch of contaminated product. Whereas H1 is not harmful if consumed accidentally, if contaminated with your products, and remains under the allowable threshold, a recall can be avoided.
How will using H1 Food Grade Lubricant help my business?
By using H1 lubricants you can potentially save your company from wasting an enormous amount of money on possibly avoidable product recalls. Managing a product recall puts a strain on resources, requires legal counsel, upsets customers and causes unwanted bad publicity about your brand. This could potentially lead consumers to switch brands, both consciously or subconsciously due to the negative exposure. Customer loyalty and trust is something that is the upmost important to companies worldwide. When a customer is loyal to a brand, it is likely because they trust the quality of the product, leading them to trust the brand itself. For a product like bread, many consumers have their go-to favorite, which ends up being a default purchase during their weekly grocery shop. Having to recall a batch of product due to lubricant contamination could disrupt the customers' natural tendency to pick up their default brand, which may result in brand switching due to the consideration of alternatives.
How likely is a lubricant contamination going to actually happen?
It's easy to read about the risks of lubricant contamination without actually visualizing it happening in your food processing facility. It's the typical "it won't happen to me" scenario, until it DOES happen to you. Don't wait until a contamination happens to switch to food grade. Be proactive and stop a harmful contamination before it happens! With the amount of air that is constantly being circulated in oven chambers, a lubricant contamination can happen. Some companies may not even realize that their lubricant contaminating their product! There has been many recalls due to lubricant contamination in the past. Most of these companies have switched to H1 food grade lubricant after the result of a harmful lubricant contamination. Here are some real life examples of expensive and time consuming recalls that have occurred in the past. We have excluded the names of these companies for confidentially reasons.
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Using an H1 food grade lubricant could have saved these companies from these harmful lubricant contamination's. Don't be like them! Use H1 food grade lubricant's and protect your business and your consumers from expensive and harmful contamination's. Click here to see our H1 food grade lubricant product offerings.
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