The importance of ensuring proper temperature regulation of produce has never been more important.
To successfully implement a versatile food safety system, the monitoring and data capture of HACCP procedures must be taken properly in real-time.
Why is RFID capability important for Food Safety?
RFID capability can be used for both temperature and location measurements. With respect to location measurements, the RFID sensors, positioned within the store, verify the employee performs a check on a checklist at a specific location.
As an example, this is used along employee travel paths, whether it is visiting a specific location within a restaurant and documenting cleanliness, ensuring opening and closing routines are being followed, or verifying that certain inventory levels have been verified, RFID location tags can prove to be invaluable. There are numerous methods to measure temperature within a store environment ranging from IoT sensor type devices to RFID Temperature Tags.
Benefits of RFID:
Requires the employee to go to the location of the tag to interrogate the temperature data from the tag. In this case, the employee may also be required to check the condition of the freezer or cooler while there.
Does not require a monthly hosting fee for its use or connect on to the store internet. The employee simply approaches the device with the temperature measuring device, interrogates the tag by holding the unit close to the tag and uploads the data to the appropriate check on the checklist.
There are very strict HACCP requirements for food temperature measurements. Failure to comply with these measurement guidelines can encourage the growth of bacteria in food and subsequently expose guests to a food borne illness.
When measuring these foods, it is critical that the temperature-measuring device can alert the user if the proper HACCP temperature has not been achieved.
To conduct this measurement properly, it is important that a fast, stabilizing, NIST calibrated temperature probe be utilized that meets HACCP temperature accuracy requirements.
Temperature Measuring Tip:
The temperature should be taken from the center of the food, or if the food is contained in a plastic bag, as is common with the prepared food industry, the bag should be folded over the thermometer for a proper measurement.
An infrared temperature measurement provides a quick verification of a surface temperature.
The IR temperature measurement can be utilized on any grill top provided the point where the measurement is taken is non-reflective.
The IR measurement may also be used for a quick spot temperature measurement of a food dish, provided the scan is taken from with the products interior. As an example, a dish of pasta would require the pasta to be stirred and the measurement taken from a point within the pasta. It should be known that this is not a substitute measurement for an actual HACCP
measurement that requires the insertion of a temperature probe in the food but only provides a quick spot check of the temperature.
Another area where an IR temperature measurement can prove invaluable in when measuring products within a freezer or the actual temperature of a freezer. In this application, the scan of the product is conducted on a non-reflective surface after the IR Thermometer has been exposed to the environment.
Did You Know?
A reflective surface has a very low emissivity (transmits energy poorly) and will create false readings on the IR thermometer.
It is recommended that an IR target be utilized within the freezer, which could be a simple piece of masking tape on the wall of the freezer or a piece of cardboard.