3-A Sanitary Standards, Inc. (3-A SSI), a community of professionals working together to develop criteria for the hygienic design of food processing equipment, recently released a new American National Standard (ANS) that will serve as a general standard establishing the minimum sanitary requirements for the design, materials, fabrication and installation of food processing equipment and systems.
Individual equipment standards previously developed by 3-A SSI for various fittings, pumps, pasteurizers and other processing equipment still remain in effect, although they may be more stringent than the new general standard. As a next step, 3-A SSI plans to align these individual equipment standards with the new general standard, which is a task that could take several years to complete. Several 3-A working groups will begin tackling this process during the coming year.
IDFA is one of the five founding members of the 3-A program and develops industry positions on 3-A standards through its 3-A User Task Force.
IDFA 3-A Users Task Force
“It will be imperative for dairy product manufacturers to engage and provide input into this alignment process to ensure that the requirements are practical and science-based,” said John Allan, IDFA vice president of regulatory affairs and international standards and member of the 3-A Board of Directors. “I encourage members to join IDFA’s 3-A Users Task Force to help us coordinate positions on draft standards among dairy processing companies that purchase and use 3-A-certified equipment.”
3-A SSI developed the general standard document, “3-A Sanitary Standards for General Requirements,” as a primary source of hygienic design criteria for 3-A Symbol authorization. Since 1956, the 3-A Symbol has been used to identify equipment that meets 3-A Sanitary Standards for design and fabrication. Voluntary use of the 3-A Symbol on dairy and food equipment assures dairy companies that equipment meets recognized sanitary standards, provides accepted criteria to equipment manufacturers for sanitary design and establishes guidelines for uniform evaluation and compliance by sanitarians.
“Work began on the new standard in 2011, and the final document reflects the cooperative efforts of many industry experts including equipment manufacturers, food and beverage product processors, and regulatory sanitarians,” said Allan.
The standard is available for purchase and download here.
For more information, contact Allan at firstname.lastname@example.org.