Illumination in the agro-food industry: the keys to achieving optimum performance
The agro-food industry is key to life itself. It supports the progress of people who live in and around agricultural areas and contributes towards protecting the environment. As such, the agro-food industry has a number of very concrete requirements, which mean that its lighting systems tend to be very specific. Luminaires need to meet a range of very specific technical characteristics designed to deliver optimum results in terms of preserving and guaranteeing the quality of food. Their characteristics and features aim to ensure durability over long periods of time under demanding conditions.
This article addresses...
- KEY INDUSTRY CONSIDERATIONS
- THE TECHNICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF LUMINAIRES
- SECOM SPECIALIST LIGHTS
Key industry considerations
A range of factors simply cannot be overlooked when planning lighting systems for food and agricultural production warehouses. Failing to take them into account could lead to any number of negative consequences for products.
The temperatures in facilities where agricultural produce is treated are often low and selected luminaires must be able to withstand these kinds of atmospheres.
Furthermore, for health and safety reasons, any accessories that are used must not contain toxic substances so that, if there are any breakages, accessory components do not end up contaminating the food being processed.
Fortunately, the LED lights that are used in this industry do not contain harmful substances and they are ideal for use in places where food is processed.
The importance of hygiene
Hygiene is a basic characteristic of environments in which foods are handled and preserved so that they can be kept in optimum condition. There are a number of requirements and steps that need to be adhered to in order to ensure that produce is not contaminated in any way. Illumination plays a very important role in terms of ensuring that the hygiene and health conditions at facilities meet the most demanding of requirements.
Good illumination installations allow the individuals working at facilities to identify even the smallest specks of dirt.
This factor directly affects the quality of most food industry processes since each product requires a certain temperature that must necessarily remain stable right across the process. Luminaires must be capable of functioning well under a wide range of temperatures.
Most food processing tasks are performed in facilities where the temperature needs to be low. These cold temperatures are generally achieved using refrigeration systems or other means of food preservation that seek to increase the shelf life of products.
As such, luminaires must be capable of withstanding the effects of even the lowest temperatures. Unlike other traditional light sources, such as incandescent and fluorescent lights, LED lights deliver the best results under these conditions.
Environmental conditions also have an impact on how tasks are performed in the agricultural and food industries. Companies in the sector have to obtain a positive environmental impact licence if they wish to operate.
This includes using luminaires that are manufactured using materials that do not contaminate and that do not have a harmful impact on processes.
Características técnicas de las luminarias
In order to ensure that processes are performed with absolute guarantees, the luminaires in illumination systems need to have certain very specific technical characteristics depending on the facility and process in question.
Production materials that contaminant free
Luminaires, just like all other surfaces in agro-food industry facilities, need to be regularly cleaned and disinfected. Therefore, they need to be manufactured in such a way that these cleaning and disinfection processes to not generate harmful reactions of any kind. Since washing processes often involve steam pressure washers, watertightness characteristics are key.
The characteristics of the industry mean that lights need to be easy to clean and repair. In addition, they must not have any small gaps or corners that small bits of food could end up getting stuck inside. Surfaces need to be flat or, if there are any curves, they need to be very slight so that removing any waste or dirt is easy, helping to keep maintenance costs down.
A wide range of temperatures
Given that the temperatures in agro-food industry cold rooms tend to be between around -20 degrees centigrade and 15 degrees centigrade, luminaires need to be able to withstand these temperatures.
Suitable levels of light
Thanks to LED lights, we are able to use a series of adjustment systems to set the luminous flux of installations to just the right level. They also allow for installation of additional secondary optics, which mean that beams of light can be redirected or focussed on selected spots. This gives agro-food industry companies the adjustable tools they need to provide exactly the right amount of light at any given moment.
SECOM specialist lights
SECOM has a wide range of luminaires that meet the most demanding of standards and are suitable for use in agro-food production facilities.
- Berna LED: This watertight luminaire is very durable and can withstand bumps, temperature variations, water and dust. Its design makes it easy to clean and the quality of its light is magnificent.
- Konak LED: This model can be used as an industrial high bay light and as a floodlight. Whatever the case, its performance levels are excellent and it is a reliable and robust luminaire. It has a transparent polycarbonate closure, injected aluminium casing and top-quality electronic components.
- Protek LED: This small floodlight has an incredibly elegant design, making it easy to integrate into facilities of all kinds and create a very attractive overall lighting system. It is commonly used in indoor industrial and commercial premises such as the ones in the agro-food industry.
- Protek Q2 LED: This LED floodlight is specifically designed for use in industrial locations. The yield is excellent thanks to the very latest Osram Oslon SSL semiconductors. It is made using 3mm injected aluminium and it also has a polycarbonate IK 08 closure that allows lots of light through.
- Esdium LED: This floodlight is ideal for areas that need powerful lighting systems. It consists of individual, adjustable modules and an angle marker. It is incredibly resistant to bumps and very watertight.
Lighting systems in the agro-food industry need to consist of devices that contribute towards optimising food production, safety and preservation. Since they are adaptable, durable and resistant, SECOM LED lights have all the necessary characteristics to deliver the required results. Furthermore, they also help to make energy savings and, in turn, improve business profitability.
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