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Sustainable materials in hoses contribute to value chain

hose

Continental’s suite of hose and nozzle offerings promise a more efficient and value-added application to the washdown process.

Through its research and development, Continental continues to provide the food and beverage industry with a 360-circular economy in terms of sustainable materials and a full value chain contribution through use of its advanced hoses.

“That goes right back to sourcing raw materials, how much you use, the types of materials, but also through the quality and research and development of making sure products last and are fit for purpose,” said Scott Weston.

“This is essential to helping build sustainability within a manufacturing company.

“By using high quality products like the ones provided by Continental, clients are able to protect their investment.”

Continental is continuously developing compounds to meet, and exceed, industry standards which in turn create a string of benefits for the end user including reduction in washdown times and potential downtimes caused by faults in the CIP process.

“In terms of the sustainability framework, everyone is seeking 100 per cent carbon neutrality, 100 per cent responsible value chain which is sourcing and human rights due diligence. Sustainable warehouse and transportation, such as recycling through the circular economy,” said Weston.

“We aim to set benchmarks in quality through long term value creation.”

hose

Continental’s Microban and anti-microbial technology is a key example of this value creation through setting new benchmarks as the first and only of its type within the Australian food and beverage industry.

“We are the only company that does that from a hose perspective, and we have recently been approved for a the NSF61 standards for potable water. Which means the water comes out as pure as it went in, and we guarantee that, which makes us the first manufacturer to get that potable water approval on a hose product,” said Weston.

Being the first company to receive an NSF61 rating for hoses is another indicator of Continental’s drive towards innovation and exceeding some industry standards.

“And we also have all our other approvals such as FDA,” said Weston.

“Another good example is centres around the application of our plasticiser free hoses within the dairy industry, where use of our hoses helps to ensure dairy products are delivered in pure farm fresh quality.”

The Dinga gun nozzle is another offering from Continental specifically designed to cut water and energy costs, linking sustainability with efficiency.

“In terms of the cleaning side we have developed the compounds to be resistant to conventional cleaning as well as using sanitised agents. It’s about making the cleaning process easier.” Weston continued.

“Like any good maintenance practises, cleanliness is always top priority and we’ve had situations when end users come to ask asking what they found in their hose and we can provide an alternative from our range and it was bacteria mildew build up and that is extremely harmful, especially in the food and beverage industry.”

When it comes to its offerings and product performance, Continental always has a safety factor in mind.

“For example, the Dinga Gun has a four to one pressure rating and that again is market leading, not many companies offer that and that’s because we trust the product’s performance and quality,” said Weston.

The life cycle of the hoses, especially because of their components, is another critical area for the company, ensuring the best quality it can which extends the life of the product.

“When you’ve got hoses that are made with specific plasticisers it can break down the hose quickly which is why we use the specific materials that we do which improves quality and life cycle,” said Weston.

“We also recommend regular cleans and clean in place (CIP) processes. The compounds we use are also capable of going through a CPI process with things like high temperatures which may degrade other products.”

Traceability has also been a continued area of attention for Continental and its newly developed Continental Crimp Cloud is a prime example of this.

“The Continental Crimp Cloud is a connected solution which can take operation to the next level,” said Weston.

“What it’s really doing is taking from the assembly process and log all of that through a digital crimper.

“When we make a hose assembly, we make a piece of equipment where hydraulic power dyes squash the fitting over the end of the hose. That is essentially what this machine does.”

In the past, to get the right crimp and attachment you would take certain measurements and make sure the crimp is done right and then when finished you measure it to make sure the correct crimp diameter is present and then a pressure test is conducted it and holds the crimp for 20 minutes to watch the pressure decline by a certain amount, giving them valuable insight into the right pressure.

“If you didn’t do that you might blow the end off or have a leak, but this nee machinery of ours avoids that issue.

“The old school way has been done for years so what continental has done is develop a side unit because it used to be manual nobs to set measurements, but this now fully integrates with the unit so you can click on there and say I am using this hose and this fitting and it will automatically know the crimp measurements, you then hit the green button and it is ready to go.”

The software also acts as a historical log which will limit downtime because the perfect pressure for each line will be logged and can be applied again and again.

“You also know who did that crimp and when they did it and what the finished specification were and then that all gets uploaded into the new Crimp Cloud, it is a full asset database,” said Weston.

“You’ll have all of that information logged and you can drag that out at any point, even upload certifications, like when you do the pressure test you can do a report and attach it to the hose so if an auditor comes over asking how old the hoses are you can pull up that data and it is all done.”

The possible savings, on time lost, stock and general costs, will also receive an added layer of security through the system.

“If you have a failure then you lose your batch, you can then check the hose and find out if it was assembled correctly, it is a fully integrated system that uses full traceability,” said Weston.

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