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A Quick Guide to Food-Grade Lubricants

Food-grade lubricants are being constantly developed to ensure that the food being produced in factories are safe from cross-contamination. Cross-contaminations are caused primarily by inevitable lubricant leaks that occur during the food production process that then could cause major food contamination.

Food-grade lubricants are designated into three: H1, H2, and H3 variants. H1 variants are used where incidental contacts may occur and is regarded as the most critical of the food-grade lubricant series. The H2 variant is designed for production wherein no contact can be made. H3 lubricants are water-soluble and typically edible for use on machine parts to prevent rust and wear.

Today, there are five governing bodies that serve as watchdog for food safety management particularly to industrial food-grade lubricants and its ingredients formulation that surpassed the Food Safety and Inspection Service Division (FSIS) of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). These include the NSF International, Underwriters Laboratory (UL), the European Hygienic Equipment Design Group (EHEDG), the National Lubricating Grease Institute (NLGI), and the European Lubricating Grease Institute (ELGI).

Based on a poll conducted by the, 56% of the plants run by lubrication professionals use food-grade lubricants.

In order to ensure the food-grade lubricants in the market are compliant to requirements, a sterner and more defined set standard was constructed and presented to the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), thus in 2006, the ISO standard 21469-2006 was implemented.

The ISO standard 21469-2006 was set to determine the hygienic provisions for handling, manufacturing and formulating food-grade lubricants which may either come into contact with food through transmission of load, transfer of heat, lubrication or packaging to be used on food, animal feeds or drugs.

The food services sector requires a specialized category and grade of lubricants that offer the same functions of typical machinery lubricants like being inert, odorless, bland, and internationally approved. The Industrial Lubricant Store (ILS) is a premier resource for top-of-the-line food-grade lubricants that are 100% OEM-compatible and ideal for virtually any type of industrial equipment in the food services industry. View our extensive product line at today.

About the Author
Randy Renick
Randy Renick has a Bachelor's degree from LSU. He is an STLE Certified Lubrication Specialist and has a 29 year work history in Industrial Lubrication. He is currently a Lubricant Consultant at The Industrial Lubricant Store.

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