Dust, although tiny, can be extremely dangerous. It harms not only humans but even animals and the environment. It contributes to air and water pollution. Dust particles are present almost anywhere. In this article, however, we will focus on dust in the food processing industry. We’ll talk about the best dust suppression and management strategies to prevent it from being a threat.
- Use Water Misters
Whether it is indoors or outdoors, water misters are promising in terms of their effectiveness in managing dust in food processing. They create atomized mists that users can control depending on the extent of the problem. There are various nozzle configurations for different applications.
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- Provide Personal Protective Equipment
The management needs to provide workers with PPE essential for dust control. The business is responsible for having state-of-the-art PPE for the highest level of protection without compromising the comfort of the users. Otherwise, their productivity declines. Workers need eye and face protection against dust, which includes respirators, face masks, and safety goggles, among others.
- Install Physical Dust Barriers
This is like a physical wall that you will install within the manufacturing facility to contain dust in a specific area. It requires building temporary walls with seals for dust containment. Depending on the product you will use, this is often a user-friendly system that you can set-up and take down within minutes.
- Remove Ignition Sources
Dust may be tiny, but it is combustible. A dust explosion is one of the problems to address in a food processing facility. Combustible dust is a common risk in facilities involved in the manufacturing of cookies, crackers, baked goodies, cereals, and spices, among others. To prevent an explosion, remove potential sources of ignition that can come in close contact with dust particles. Ignition can come from static electricity and open flames, among others.
- Pay Attention to Your Ventilation System
Dust control is also easier when there is proper ventilation. Global practices dictate that ventilation is critical to improving air quality in a facility. It eliminates odors. With a proper ventilation system design, it is also effective in routing dust away from the workers and directing it somewhere it won’t be a threat.
- Control Dust Before It Becomes a Threat
Prevention is better than cure, even when it comes to dust management. It is crucial to have proactive measures in controlling dust in the food processing facility. For instance, there should be hazardous dust inspection programs. It also helps to use raw materials and equipment that will be effective in lessening the amount of dust that food production processes create.
Dust in food processing plants can be a significant risk on the health of the workers. It also affects the production outcomes and can cause contamination. Take note of our suggestions above to address these problems and prevent dust from being a workplace risk.