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Sanitary Brewing Pumps

Hi guys – Luke Simpson here, Sales Manager from your favourite pump company! I have worked on a number of projects within the Brewing Industry during my time at Tapflo UK which has made me very aware that a number of brewers aren’t using Brewing Pumps that aren’t sanitary within their process line. So it’s about time I share my knowledge in a guest post to highlight the importance of using hygienic pumps in this industry and other industries where the end product goal is to be consumed by customers. Have a read below!

One of the main perks that come with working at Tapflo UK is that I get to visit some interesting sites, meet even more interesting people, and get to see some awesome applications!

Brewing Pump

My favourite sites to visit have to be breweries! I’m a massive (slightly obsessed) beer fan! It doesn’t matter if its dark, light, flat, fizzy or completely bonkers, I’ll give it a try and then I’m more than likely to bore my nearest and dearest as to why I like or dislike the beer, along with giving them the full history of the brewery that produced the beer. We all have a passion, luckily for me, two of mine go hand in hand, pumps and beer!

As many of you will have noticed, the UK beer market is booming! Companies that were at one time just small start-ups, started by friends with an idea and a garage, are now dominating the market, and I for one, couldn’t be more excited. The success that some of the UK’s leading craft breweries have had over the last few years has led to a surge in inspired entrepreneurs starting up breweries, and the market is now thriving with a huge array of exciting and pretty mental beers to be enjoyed.

From small independent corner shops and pubs to leading supermarkets, you don’t have to look too far to find something out of the ordinary when it comes to a beer in today’s market! For me this is obviously the ideal situation, I love beer and get to visit new and exciting breweries for work…dream come true, right?!

What I will say, is that every time I do visit a brewery, I’m disappointed to see non-food grade Water Pumps being used for beer applications. Now…before I get any backlash I just want to make it clear that this isn’t a dig at any brewers or pump manufacturers. My aim is simply to educate those who may not be aware, why these shouldn’t be used as brewing pumps.

A few quickfire points on why industry-standard Water Centrifugal pumps shouldn’t be used on brewing applications:

  • The pumps are not FDA (Food and Drug Administration) approved. Just because a mechanical seal is FDA approved, doesn’t mean that the pump should be used in food-grade applications, especially when the end destination for the product is human consumption.
  • Many of the pumps I see are standard Water Centrifugal Pumps manufactured in 304 unpolished Stainless Steel, which is definitely not food grade. To put it simply, the lower the grade of the stainless steel and the lower quality of finish, ultimately means there is a higher risk of bacteria growth within the pump due to the rougher finish and small crevasses in the Steel.

Here’s an example… Imagine the knife and fork that you use every day to eat your dinner, it’s a nice and shiny polished product that is easily cleaned! Now, imagine that but unpolished and roughly finished, where food from the night before or even weeks before can’t be washed out, and is causing bacteria to grow! I certainly wouldn’t want to eat my grub with that!

  • Standard Centrifugal Pumps tend to have a short lifespan. If the majority of these pumps were pumping water for applications that they were built for, they would probably last a lifetime! OK… Maybe not a lifetime, but they would definitely chug along for a long time without causing you any hassle! Now, you lucky devils are about to get another example from me!

You wouldn’t put petrol in a diesel car or vice versa, would you? So why put something that’s not water through a water pump? It doesn’t make sense!

As stated above, this article is to simply educate brewers as to why these pumps are not recommended by me and my team as brewing pumps. Additionally, it’s something that will more than likely become closely regulated at some point, so why not get ahead of the game?! Breweries need to be ready for when this does happen!

Until then, surely it’s better to have the best pump possible to ensure your product is the best version of itself? Or perhaps we should champion hygiene when producing products that will be consumed by people, we want loyal customers, not those who were left with a bad taste in their mouth, perhaps quite literally!

I’m lucky to have platforms such as the Tapflo UK website and LinkedIn at my disposal to express my knowledge, experience and concerns, in order to educate others. I hope this article has been helpful in giving you a new lease of life for food-grade pumps!

Tapflo's Hygienic Centrifugal Pump for brewing beer

If it has, that’s great, and if you don’t already have an FDA approved pump for your brewery, Tapflo happens to offer a fully FDA approved Centrifugal Pump that can be used in brewing applications, as well as a range of other brewing pump options such as our Flexible Impeller Pump range.

The CTH Hygienic Centrifugal Pump is manufactured from Stainless Steel AISI 316L and is electro-polished Ra <0.8 for a high-quality finish and can also be supplied with all the correct certificates, meaning they are suitable for products intended for human consumption! What are the chances ay!

In all seriousness, if you work in a brewery and would like to swap your non-food grade Centrifugal Pumps out for some shiny and fully FDA approved pumps, then get in touch today!

Let’s talk about your Brewing Pump requirements, I’d love to talk you through the additional benefits of our Hygienic Centrifugal Pump (CTH) or Flexible Impeller Pumps. Maybe we can have a discussion about why you should be using a food-grade pump for products destined to be consumed by beer lovers!

So why not give me a call or send me an email at [email protected]

Want to know more? Contact the sales team for additional support with your application or pump requirements

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