Regarding cases of physical contamination in food products, more than one third of the cases can be tied to process and product packaging as the source. In many of these incidents, bits of stretch wrap (from stretch-wrapped ingredients used in processing, for example) enter the flow.
Sean Smith, CEO of UK-based Detectamet, said in the past the firm frequently heard requests from customers for a stretch wrap that would be less prone to mucking up the works and contaminating food items.
“We produce many metal detectable plastic products that help to reduce contamination of finished food product, and several of them have been made at the specific request of food production companies,” he said.
Requests for detectable wrap, Smith said, were common enough that he was moved to dig deeper.
“When customers started to ask for detectable wrap I asked how big was the problem and the data I was given helped us to realise the size of the challenge,” he explained.
Passing the test
Smith reported the detectable stretch wrap has performed well in tests, offering good levels of detectability with metal detection gear. The 30-micron wrap stood up well in field tests, offering resilient strength and a high resistance to tearing.
“Flimsy cheap wrap seems to be a pet hate of dispatch staff,” he said. “I suppose there is nothing as frustrating as trying to get a waiting lorry loaded and the wrap tears in mid-wrap.”
The detectable stretch wrap comes in two roll sizes. The hand-wrapper size is 400mm wide and 200m long; the machine size measures 500m by 800m.
Rolls can be ordered individually, or in cases of multiple rolls. The company reports the wrap meets all US and EU requirements for food-contact materials.