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Keeping the Fruit and Vegetables You Eat Safe and Clean
 
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Keeping the Fruit and Vegetables You Eat Safe and Clean
Date: 29-12-2016

In previous posts, we have discussed how Arpal Gulf LLC partners with niche suppliers providing specialist products and services that complement our own core business in cleaning chemicals.

In addition to the two areas already covered - swimming pool hygiene and equine health - this also includes an innovative new product for fruit and vegetable disinfection using hydrogen peroxide stabilised with silver. The product ensures that the fruit and vegetables consumed in the growing number of food establishments across the region are kept safe and clean using a product solution that is both extremely effective and also environment friendly.

GCC food consumption

Food and beverage consumption in GCC countries is growing exponentially driven by a booming population and rapid tourism growth. Total food consumption in the region is expected to reach 51.9 million metric tonnes by 2019, a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.5 per cent between 2014 and 2019. 

As a consequence, GCC member states are witnessing increased investment from food processing companies eager to take advantage of emerging market opportunities. With 70 per cent of food products in the GCC being imported, there is a rapidly growing food processing industry supplying both the local and re-export markets. The UAE, in particular, is one of the leading food importers and re-exporters to the wider region.

Food hygiene standards

Much of the increase in food consumption is taking place ‘on-premise’ with the eating-out market in the region growing rapidly. In the UAE alone, an additional 1,600 food outlets are set to join the food & beverage sector by 2019.

With such rapid growth taking place, it becomes even more important that food operators ensure that best practice hygiene standards are being followed. Several countries have introduced, or are in the process of introducing, new legislation aimed at driving up food hygiene standards.

Last year, for example, Dubai Municipality rolled out a new Colour Coding System to all food establishments in the city aimed at improving levels of hygiene and food safety. The new grading system, based on global best practice, requires all premises, including restaurants, cafeterias, catering companies and food manufacturers, to display their inspection ratings for customers to see.

Early evidence suggests that the new scheme is having the desired effect of increasing transparency and food safety standards. In the first nine months of this year, 1,084 food outlets were awarded an excellent ‘A’ rating. A further 7,052 outlets secured a ‘B’ rating of ‘very good’, a significant improvement on last year’s total of 3,776 establishments. At the other extreme, 163 food outlets have been temporarily closed due to maintenance and hygiene issues. 

Fruit and vegetable disinfectant

Arpal Gulf works closely with our customers in ensuring that their premises remain spotlessly clean and that best practice hygiene standards are being followed. Our extensive experience in the Middle East, spanning two decades, provided us with an exciting opportunity for related diversification into fruit and vegetable disinfection

We have a patented multi-component disinfectant ideal for use on fruit and vegetables. The oxidising agent used is hydrogen peroxide, bonded with stabilising agents to form a complex solution. A long-lasting effect is ensured by the addition of silver, which acts as a catalyst in trace amounts. The bactericidal effect of silver is based on the fact that the monovalent silver ion binds very firmly to bacterial proteins by a covalent or coordinate bond, and thus inactivates or precipitates these. 

Key product features include the following:

  • Powerful and effective against a broad range of bacteria, viruses, amoebae, fungi and algae causing food related illnesses.
  • The two main constituents (H2O and Ag) offer a two pronged attack so the bactericidal effect comes into action quicker and more intensively than if either substance was used on its own.
  • Ease of use as only one chemical is needed compared to the multiple products required with other disinfectants.
  • Extremely good stability ensuring excellent shelf life. The product remains stable at high water/air temperatures. Indeed, its effectiveness is even increased at high temperatures.
  • Long-term effectiveness providing protection against re-contamination.
  • Eco-friendly. The principal constituent is hydrogen peroxide, which does not pollute waste water. Because it breaks down into water and oxygen (H2O and O2), it produces no noxious by-products.
  • Additional green benefits are derived from the fact that the product contains no chlorine thereby avoiding harmful by-products. Because the fruit and vegetables do not require to be rinsed, the process uses significantly less water than other types of disinfectant that require to be rinsed after disinfection.
  • As well as being completely safe to use and environmentally friendly, the fact that no chlorine is used also means that the fruit and vegetables treated with our product look much better and vibrant on the plate.
 
Although the product can be used as a surface disinfectant, it is sold specifically into the HORECA sector (Hotels, Restaurants & Catering) for food and vegetable disinfection. The product is dosed automatically using a Ventura dosing system, thereby removing the chances of human error. Dosing is at low concentration, typically a 2 per cent solution.
 
As well as supplying the product itself, Arpal Gulf also works closely with customers in ensuring that best practice guidelines for fruit and vegetable disinfection are being followed. It is crucial that the fruit and vegetables supplied to the hotel, restaurant or catering company meet the highest standards of food safety and quality. Produce should only be sourced from approved suppliers with full and complete supply chain traceability. Full compliance with Municipality Food Safety Regulations is mandatory. Premises must have in place an appropriate quality management system, reviewed regularly and updated as required.
 
Contact details:  
Tel: 800 4005 (Toll Free within UAE) | +971-4-880 3220  
E-mail: info@arpal.ae  
Website: www.arpalgulf.com
 
 
 
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