What is CIP Cleaning?

  • Stainless Steel Tanks
CIP cleaning is a process utilized for cleaning the interior surfaces of various food and beverage equipment, including tanks, pumps, and homogenizers. This cleaning process is usually carried out using an automated CIP system. However, instead of cleaning the equipment, parts that cannot be cleaned-in-place are often cleaned-out-of-place. This method involves removing components such as clamps, belts, and hoses from the machine. Whether it’s a simple CIP or a more complex process, the principles of TACT (Time, Action, Chemical, and Temperature) are very important when it comes to cleaning equipment. These factors were presented in a book by Herbert Sinner in 1959. Although the use of automated cleaning systems has advanced significantly, the principles of TACT are still very important. By understanding them, engineers can develop effective and efficient cleaning methods.

When to Consider CIP Cleaning?

Before implementing a CIP system, engineers should first understand the type of cleaning that they’re going to perform. Even with liquid-soluble products, such as juice, it can still be difficult to clean since there are variations in the composition of these components. Also, keeping in mind the possibility of bacterial growth is very important when it comes to cleaning dairy products. For various types of equipment, such as concrete, soil conditions can also affect the design of the CIP system.

TACT Principles and CIP Cleaning

A good understanding of the product and the process phases can then be established to determine the ideal time and temperature to thoroughly clean it. For instance, cleaning a cold ice cream line usually takes longer than usual to get the right temperature. In addition, running various chemicals in a cycle can remove dairy proteins and fats, which can cause bacterial growth. Before the system can be used, various factors such as the distance from the line and the size of the equipment should be taken into account to determine the proper pump size. According to Mark Barrie, a consultant, a minimum flow velocity of five feet per second is ideal for minimizing dead legs.

What else to think about

A variety of configurations can be used to design a CIP system, such as a single tank, multi-tank, or multi-circuit system. These systems can be used to provide better efficiency and reduce overall expenses. A good system can also be built with multiple tanks to allow for reuse of chemical. Another tank can be added to increase the capacity of a cleaning cycle and provide a rinse recovery step.
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