7 CFR 58.241 - Packaging, repackaging and storage.

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§ 58.241 Packaging, repackaging and storage.

(a) Containers. Packages or containers used for the packaging of nonfat dry milk or other dry milk products shall be any clean, sound commercially accepted container or packaging material which will satisfactorily protect the contents through the regular channels of trade, without significant impairment of quality with respect to flavor, wholesomeness or moisture content under the normal conditions of handling. In no instance will containers which have previously been used for nonfood items, or food items which would be deleterious to the dairy product be allowed to be used for the bulk handling of dairy products.

(b) Filling. Empty containers shall be protected at all times from possible contamination and containers which are to be lined shall not be prepared more than one hour in advance of filling. Every precaution shall be taken during the filling operation to minimize product dust and spillage. When necessary a mechanical shaker shall be provided; the tapping or pounding of containers should be prohibited. The containers shall be closed immediately after filling and the exteriors shall be vacuumed or brushed when necessary to render them practically free of residual product before being transferred from the filling room to the palleting or dry storage areas.

(c) Repackaging. The entire repackaging operation shall be conducted in a sanitary manner with all precautions taken to prevent contamination and to minimize dust. All exterior surfaces of individual containers shall be practically free of product before overwrapping or packing in shipping containers. The room shall be kept free of dust accumulation, waste, cartons, liners, or other refuse. Conveyors, packaging and carton making equipment shall be vacuumed frequently during the operating day to prevent the accumulation of dust. No bottles or glass materials of any kind shall be permitted in the repackaging or hopper room. The inlet openings of all hoppers and bins shall be of minimum size, screened and placed well above the floor level. The room and all packaging equipment shall be cleaned as often as necessary to maintain a sanitary operation. Close attention shall be given to cleaning equipment where residues of the dry product may accumulate. A thorough clean-up including windows, doors, walls, light fixtures and ledges, should be performed as frequently as is necessary to maintain a high standard of cleanliness and sanitation. All waste dry dairy products including dribble product at the fillers, shall be properly identified and disposed of as animal feed.

(d) Storage -

(1) Product. The packaged dry milk product shall be stored or so arranged in aisles, rows, or sections and lots at least 18 inches from any wall and in such a manner as to be orderly, easily accessible for inspection or for cleaning of the room. All bags and small containers of products shall be placed on pallets elevated from the floor. Products in small containers may be stored by methods preventing direct contact with the floor when the condition of the container is satisfactorily maintained. The storage room shall be kept clean and dry and all openings protected against entrance of insects and rodents.

(2) Supplies. All supplies shall be placed on dunnage or pallets and arranged in an orderly manner for accessibility and cleaning of the room. It is preferable that supplies be stored in an area separate from that used for storing the dry products. Supplies shall be kept enclosed in their original wrapping material until used. After removal of supplies from their original containers, they shall be kept in an enclosed metal cabinet, bins or on shelving and if not enclosed shall be protected from powder, and dust or other contamination. The room should be vacuumed as often as necessary and kept clean and orderly.