Birko Blog

As a leader in food safety, Birko is at the forefront of industry research and trends. Fighting resident foodborne pathogens, developing plant sanitation solutions, sanitary design of custom equipment, and precision chemical blending. In this space, our experts share their insights on these and other timely topics.

Food Safety Inspections and Audits | What Can Produce Processors Expect?

check list

Do you know the difference between a food safety audit and an inspection? And, how to prepare for each one? Although the terms are sometimes used interchangeably, there are important differences between them. While audits and inspections may address some of the same standards, such as the rules in the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), their purpose, significance and scope vary.

Organic Certification Without Compromising Food Safety

peppers on cleaning line

You don’t have to compromise the use of food safety chemicals to achieve organic certification. Yet, it can be difficult for produce processors to identify chemistry that complies with both the requirements of proper sanitation and what certifiers allow. Most organic produce processors view gaining certification as a crucial step, but how important is it? When it comes to produce, half of U.S. consumers say they are most likely to buy organic fruits and vegetables, outpacing the percentage of those who consider purchasing organic dairy and meat.

Why Birko Brewery Customers Win Medals

The World Beer Cup (WBC) is one of the most prestigious blind beer tasting competitions in the world. It occurs every other year during the Brewer’s Association (BA) Craft Brewers Conference (CBC) and BrewExpo America. Unlike the Great American Beer Festival annual competition, where only American-made beers are allowed to compete, the WBC competition is open to breweries across the world. At last week’s World Beer Cup, 8,234 beers entered (801 from outside the US) from 2,515 participating breweries from 33 countries. 295 judges (72% of them from outside the US) judged beers in 101 categories. An award given at… Read More

What Industry Veterans Should Know About FSMA

I’ve worked in the USDA- and FDA-regulated further processing industries for a number of years and recently completed the FSPCA Preventive Controls for Human Food Blended Course to help me understand the regulation and the nomenclature used in FSMA – and to meet the requirements of a Preventive Controls Qualified Individual. While the FSMA final role was published back on 2015 and most plants have already fallen under the FSMA final rule, smaller plants, and those subject to other parts (i.e. produce safety) may just now be working through the complexities as well as some of the provisions. Under FSMA… Read More

Questions and Answers About Brewery CIP Chemicals

brew chemicals

Don’t climb in the kettle to remove soil after a CIP – boost your caustic or alkaline cleaner with hydrogen peroxide instead! By using caustic and hydrogen peroxide in the same solution, you can simply rinse soil away instead of accepting protein building-up in the brewhouse as ‘just the way it is.’ In this webinar I gave for the Colorado Brewers Guild, you can learn more about how to improve your brewhouse cleaning using caustic and hydrogen peroxide. Click here to watch the webinar Keep reading below for some of the questions I received from brewers like yourselves about this… Read More