'Really Cool Food' Becomes Really Safe Too
As a leading manufacturer of natural and organic fresh prepared foods, The Really Cool Food Company, LLC takes great care to assure products are delicious and safe. As the final touch in its quality-conscious endeavor, The Really Cool Food Company relies on AdvanChek x-ray inspection systems from Metter-Toledo Safeline and Beltweigh XE checkweighers from Mettler-Toledo Hi-Speed at their new production center, which opened in October 2008 to prepare combination meals, entrees, salads and side dishes.
"Food safety is priority number one for us,” said Kevin King, Vice President of Operations at The Really Cool Food Company. “We want to be the best at what we do so we always choose the best equipment and the best companies to support it. Given our focus on quality, Mettler-Toledo Safeline was the number one choice, hands down.
"We contacted our Mettler-Toledo Safeline sales rep, Pete Haggard at Action Services, to talk about metal detection. We told him we wanted the best inspection possible. Pete showed us the benefits and value of x-ray to find a wide variety of foreign material and ensure the highest level of food safety," explained King. "Choosing between metal detection and x-ray inspection, we decided to spend a little more and detect a wider range of foreign materials."
AdvanChek detects metal as well as bone, glass, stones and other dense contaminants. In addition to detecting foreign material, the system detects product voids and can verify that product composition conforms to specifications.
At The Really Cool Food Company, the two x-ray systems inspect over 120 unique products on the lines that produce cooked proteins and combination meals packed in trays ranging in size from 12 oz for single serve customers to 5 lb for the deli case and foodservice customers.
"The x-ray systems are the easiest things in the plant to changeover. It takes maybe two minutes. What pleases me most about these systems, other than the detection capabilities of course, is the ease of operation. Our quality assurance manager and our operators are all very happy with the Safeline x-ray systems," noted King.
"The first measure of success with the x-ray systems is food safety. Productivity is another important measure. With the Safeline systems, we haven’t spent even five minutes on maintenance since we installed them," said King. "We don’t always need to have a person standing there like we do with some other machinery. The reliability of the x-ray systems saves time, saves headaches and guarantees the food is safe."
Adding to its end-of-line quality verification, The Really Food Company relies on two Beltweigh XE checkweighers from Mettler-Toledo Hi-Speed, which detect underfills and overfills. "The Hi-Speed checkweighers track and record the weight of every package. We consider the variability and adjust the lines to get a better yield. Of course, the checkweighers also ensure the correct weight of every product, which is another way for us to assure we’re constantly providing our customers with the highest product quality," concluded King.