The presence of biofilms in industrial working surfaces within processing operations is the main cause of contamination of the final product. Biofilms are groups of microorganisms attached to surfaces which produce a number of extracellular polymeric substances (EPS) that protect them from adverse environmental conditions.
EPS make microorganisms resistant and form a barrier against conventional cleaning and disinfection procedures, making it more difficult to remove the biofilm.
Biofilms are invisible to the naked eye, but they can be detected.
BioFinder simply sprayed on the surfaces of the installation to immediately reveal areas contaminated by simple visual inspection.
BioFinder has been tested on the most relevant microorganisms found in the food industry.
From a microbiological standpoint of food safety: those capable of generating foodborne disease outbreaks such as Listeria monocytogenes, Salmonella spp., Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Cronobacter sakazakii. From a technological standpoint: spoilage flora that can affect food product shelf life mainly as Pseudomonas spp.
BioFinder offers a series of significant advantages over other detection methods:
- It’s a quick and affordable technique.
- It simplifies monitoring processes in surface hygiene.
- It can treat large areas with its formula and packaging types.
- It doesn’t stain or leave residues on surfaces due to its high water solubility which aids in rinsing.
- Thanks to its simple application and response type, handling by technical staff is not required.
Microbial biofilm, the most important component of (micro) biofouling, represents a serious tech- nological issue, particularly where water is a critical process element. The biofilm can:
- Decrease thermal efficiency of heat exchangers (e.g. by 30% for a 20 microns-thick bacterial layer).
- Increase inorganic fouling, producing sticky substances which increase particles adhesion.
- Pave the way to bigger organisms settlement, the usually called macrofouling, which can constrict water flux, increasing energy consumption.
- Cause microbially-induced corrosion (MIC), which accounts for multi-billion dollars of industrial damages all over the world. These problems can eventually lead to pipe blockages and plant idle.
- Be dangerous for FOOD SAFETY.
Biofilm cleaning treatments must be applied as soon as bacteria start to settle on water-dipped surfaces, since:
- It is much more difficult and expensive, both in terms of detergents and disinfectant concentration and contact time, to deal with a mature biofilm, with respect to an early-stage one. As a matter of fact, since the first growth of biofilm extracellular matrix (EPS), biofilm resistance to external agents can increase by three order of magnitude (x1000).
- After reaching a pseudo-equilibrium condition, biofilm outmost layers tend to detach and float away. This increases the likelihood of biofilm formation in other plant sections.