Prevention before detection

May 2020

Preventing foreign body contamination is a critical part of every production process – none more so than food and beverage manufacturing. Brand perception and consumer loyalty are on the line. The potential impact on job security and bottom line is significant.  As a result metal and x-ray detection play an important role in making sure product arrives with consumers in perfect condition. Foreign body detection technology has advanced massively, so why does the number of incidents remain so high? Both with product recalls and production line stoppages.

The medical profession has a saying “treat the disease not the symptoms”. Why wouldn’t this also apply to foreign body contamination control?

When foreign objects are present there is always the risk of contamination. However advanced the technology, it does not stop the risk arising in the first place. The downtime every time a production line has to stop costs money. Every contaminated product rejected by detectors also costs money. This is all unnecessary cost – how much more effective is it to control these risks in the first instance? Hygiene Technologies embraces this concept through our policy of “prevention before detection”.

 So how does this apply to factory pens and detectable pens? Quite simple.
  1. Retreeva pens contain the minimum number of components. This removes unnecessary risks caused by surplus and small component parts. Did you know, each Retreeva pen contains a maximum of 3 components? (All of which are metal and x-ray detectable!)
  2. No metal spring. The majority of pens in general use across the globe contain a metal spring, and for good reason. Springs provide a smooth and effective mechanism for retracting the cartridge. However, metal springs are extremely hard for metal detectors to detect, especially in ‘wet’ products such as ready meals. As a result, Retreeva pens are designed so that this risk is completely removed.
  3. Retreeva Global factory pens are made from a specially formulated material which does not shatter under duress. Under unnatural or unreasonable force, Retreeva pens may bend or eventually break into two parts, but each part can be accounted for. Pens made from a more brittle material are prone to shattering under force. This creates many small shards which spread far and wide in an uncontrolled manner. It is then impossible to locate every fragment, with those left unaccounted for likely to enter the production line. Metal and x-ray detectors are unlikely to detect these pieces due to their minuscule size.

 Prevention before detection is not only the safest approach for foreign body and contamination control, but the only approach. Product integrity demands no compromise.

Find out more about detectable pens or contact a member of our Solutions team.