We all get grossed out every time we hear those crazy news stories about how someone was happily chowing down until they looked down and discovered a dead cockroach, rodent droppings or a sharp piece of something in whatever they were eating. As a matter of fact, I think I saw a headline about a purported dead mouse in a carton of milk just last week. Naaaaaaasty!!! Most of us have squeaked by without falling victim to food contamination, but every time you hear another gross-out story, it’s easy to think “How can stuff like this be happening, in this day and age of health codes, lawsuits, and complete paranoia?”
Easy. Everything that we consume is touched by humans and/or machinery, two “breeds” (so to speak) that are infamous for things like error and general malfunction. We screw up. The things we invent screw up. It’s going to happen. Luckily, groups like the FDA and WHO are cracking down more than ever on the conditions in food and pharmaceutical manufacturing facilities, right down to the kind of cable management used on data cabling and automated machinery.
Yep, even the cable ties. Code usually demands that metal cable ties be used in food and drug manufacturing, so that if they happen to break off of nearby machinery or overhead cables and fall into product, they can be quickly detected by scanners, and then removed. The only thing is that all-metal cable ties can cost a bundle, which can hurt when businesses are trying to save money.
That’s why it’s so nice that HellermannTyton has developed a metal-content cable tie that looks and feels like the regular plastic kind, but has all the detectablility of a metal tie. That’s thanks to tiny metal particles that are distributed throughout the main plastic material – cool, huh? A little thing like metallized plastic is enough to meet code and fit budgets, but is actually far easier to handle than metal, which can be on the sharp and rigid side. And in the event that one ever breaks and drops onto a conveyor belt or into a vat, it can be easily picked up by scanners and removed. Your chances of ever biting into one of these babies is practically nil.
Hmmmmm, I seem to be getting my appetite back…