Tetra Pak is one of Sweden’s most well known companies. Founded in 1951 by Ruben Rausing . It develops, manufactures and sells systems for packaging and distribution of liquid foods, and most people are aware of the cardboard milk cartons found on breakfast tables . What they may not be aware of is that Tetra Pak has been using products from BioThema since 2003.
A key competence of Tetra Pak is the department of Aseptic Technologies, an area that employs about 40 people with different skills, including microbiology, sterilization and hygiene and flow systems technologies, involved in development of aseptic filling machines.
Part of an aseptic filling machine
Mia Ramgren is a microbiologist with an education in applied microbiology from Lund University, and has worked at Tetra Pak since 2001. Before she started at Tetra Pak she worked at an analysis laboratory for the Swedish dairy industry and it was there that she first encountered ATP technology.
One of the main concerns when developing an aseptic filling machine is how to clean it between production runs, and which materials are most easy to keep clean. The use of water and detergent has to be minimized both for economic and also environmental reasons. Testing the cleaning includes smearing the whole machine with sour milk before a cleaning run is started. After the cleaning the surfaces are tested for product residues with the ATP technology.
Swabbing to get to areas that might be contaminated.
Mia Ramgren uses ATP technology, more precisely LuciPac W from BioThema, for checking the cleaning program. “We used to use visual examination and certain indicator organisms for the control of cleaning. However the results were not reliable, and therefore we started to use ATP technology instead. We are very happy with BioThema and LuciPac W. We have tried other ATP measurement methods from Biotrace and Hygiena, but none has been as sensitive for our purposes as LuciPac W.”
Mia holding a LuciPac W swab device from Biothema.
Mia Ramgern can be contacted at mia.ramgren(at)tetrapak.com.
Visit www.tetrapak.com to read more about Tetra Pak.