The food & beverage sector has taken a big hit during the pandemic. We want to make sure that when you open your doors again, you can do so confidently, knowing that gas detection will not be on your worry list. 

Standing shoulder to shoulder...

Analox has worked shoulder to shoulder with the food and beverage industry since the company began almost 40 years ago. We provide gas monitors to the industry supply chains, to breweries, wineries, fermentation plants, pubs, bars, restaurants, all the way down the ladder to end-users. We have seen the industry grow and develop in many ways over this time, but in the last 12 months, the most significant change has come from the food home delivery sector.

The sector is also now having to adapt to offer outdoor dining and ensuring you are COVID-secure for indoor dining. Restaurants and fast food chains have also adapted to the home delivery demand. 

Since the start of the pandemic, Latin and North America have experienced the greatest rise in online grocery sales. Statistics show approximately 60% of Americans are placing a take-out order from their favorite eateries once a week. 

Online grocery sales across the world reached record heights, with the US seeing the biggest boom of a 53% increase in 2020 and this is forecast to continue to grow, with the market estimated to be worth around $129 billion by 2023.  

Beverage Industry

The beverage industry plays host to many different gases. For example, a mix of carbon dioxide (CO2) and nitrogen (N2) are both used to create the creamy carbonated texture of Guinness. These gases are also essential to the quality of the finished beer and prolonging shelf-life stability.

The reason why carbon dioxide is used in fizzy drinks is because of its solubility in liquid. Around 1.5 liters of carbon dioxide can be dissolved in just one liter of water - and when carbon dioxide is combined with a liquid, it forms Carbonic Acid - which gives us the fizz.

Analox has worked alongside the food & beverage industry for almost 40 years and has developed a range of reliable, accurate and easy to use gas safety monitors for your restaurants, pubs, bars and fast food establishments meaning that you can stay open and safely run “business as usual” without having to worry about dangerous gases. 

Nitrogen (N)

Nitrogen is also a commonly used gas in the production of beer to create bubbles, particularly in stouts and pale ales. This produces a creamier taste and a less acidic beer than those using carbon dioxide. Nitrogen is also used to pressurize drinks in PET (polyethylene terephthalate) bottles to provide support during bulk transportation. PET bottles will usually be too weak to carry a heavy weight, but the use of a nitrogen ‘blanket’ can enable safe transportation. Our aim is to keep you, your staff and your customers safe. We do what we do best so that you can do what you do best.

While nitrogen itself is not a toxic gas, enriched levels in the atmosphere will displace the oxygen content which can be hazardous to workers. The atmosphere usually consists of 20.9% oxygen, and even a small drop in O2 content can cause a number of health issues including dizziness, nausea, drowsiness, a loss of consciousness and ultimately death. Even a small nitrogen leak can be fatal to workers, as the expansion rate is so high. Therefore, being able to monitor any gas leaks is essential to saving lives.

Carbon Dioxide (CO2)

Carbon dioxide is safe at atmospheric levels and is the perfect product for carbonating our drinks, however, wherever carbon dioxide is used and stored - there is always a risk to health.

One of the main reasons that carbon dioxide is a health risk is the fact that it is completely undetectable by human senses - meaning it cannot be tasted, smelt, or seen. In high concentrations, a CO2 leak causes nausea, headaches, and loss of consciousness. Once an individual loses consciousness, death by hypercapnia (CO2 toxicity) can occur.

Fear not, Analox is here to help and make sure that this never happens to you, your staff or your customers. We offer many CO2 monitors for your restaurants, pubs and bars that will ensure you don’t become another statistic. 

Where do I put my CO2 and O2 monitors?

As carbon dioxide is heavier than air, it’s important to place CO2 monitors low to the ground - where they can monitor the areas with the highest concentration of carbon dioxide.

O2 monitors should be installed at normal working head height for the area. It is best practice to carry out a risk assessment to determine the best location in the room based on layout, ventilation, gas sources and air flow. 

Due to the volume of gases used in the food and beverage industry, it is commonplace for incidents  to occur and sadly, there have also been multiple deaths reported in this industry due to gas leaks. It is important you keep your team safe as well as complying to your local regulations.

Each area of the world regulates the permissible limits for gases such as CO2 and O2. The best and easiest way to stay safe and comply is to use gas monitoring systems, ideally those with a TWA (Time Weighted Average) function. As well as installing gas alarms, all equipment used in the carbonation and preparation of drinks needs to be well maintained - minimizing risks of fatal leaks.

Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP)

The proof was in the pudding, now it’s in the packaging…

The demand for fresher and longer-lasting products in the food and beverage sector is constantly increasing. Food products are traveling further afield, reaching new customers in different destinations. This demand brings a need for better quality control methods, as well as the implementation of new technologies.

Arguably the most popular method involves Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP). This is when the atmosphere inside the packaging is modified in order to increase the shelf life of the product, retaining freshness, and preventing microbes from growing.

MAP works on the basis that gases in contact with the product are replaced by controlled gaseous mixtures, which in turn flushes air from the packaging. Although it differs from product to product, the most commonly used gases include carbon dioxide, oxygen, and nitrogen, these gases help to combat bacteria and stop oxidation of the food. 

A meaty fact:

Oxygen is generally used to package meat products as it helps maintain coloring. As soon as the meat is cut, oxygen reacts with the myoglobin and creates the bright red color associated with oxymyoglobin. Nitrites keep meat red by bonding to the myoglobin and acting as a substitute for oxygen. Oxygen and sodium nitrate both turn myoglobin red, but nitrate attaches with a more stable bond and so the color lasts longer.

With so many gases being used within the food manufacturing process, the need for reliable gas monitoring equipment is essential. Analox provides monitors to cover every step of the “Farm to Fork” journey. 

Food packaging and storage techniques exploit the properties of atmospheric gases in order to create the optimum conditions for protecting food. The packing phase typically employs a process known as modified atmosphere packaging (MAP), in which the ratio of O2, CO2, and N2 is altered to suit the requirements of the product being packed.

Much of the food we see in our grocery stores and supermarkets arrived there via transportation companies (home delivery and food transportation) by using dry ice to package the foods to keep them fresh or frozen. As produce is traveling further and further around the world to reach its final destination, the freshness and longevity must be upheld, dry ice is a great way to ensure this.

Legislation

EH40 UK Legislation

States that the TWA (employee's average airborne exposure in any 8-hour work shift of a 40-hour workweek which shall not be exceeded) for CO2 is 5,000 ppm and the short-term exposure limit (15 minutes) is 15,000ppm.
Recommended Products: Ax60+, CO2BUDDY

OSHA US Legislation

States that the 8-hour TWA PEL (level of exposure established as the highest level of exposure an employee may be exposed to CO2 without incurring the risk of adverse health effects) is 5,000ppm and a 30,000ppm limit that must not be exceeded in a 10 minute period. A value of 40,000ppm is considered immediately dangerous to life and health (IDLH value).
Recommended Products: Ax60+, CO2BUDDY

NIOSH Legislation

A REL (reference emissions level) for CO2 not to exceed 5,000 ppm over an 8-hour TWA and a 15-minute TWA STEL (short-term exposure level) of 30,000 ppm for CO2 in workplace air.
Recommended Products: Ax60+, CO2BUDDY

AS5034 Legislation

This piece of Australian legislation sets a minimum standard for the use of gases in the hospitality industry. The standard is not just confined to new installations, it also requires any existing equipment to be updated to conform. Employers have an obligation to provide a safe working environment and those choosing to work with Analox can rest assured that they will meet these standards.

Often, CO2 cylinders used for dispensing beverages are kept in confined spaces with limited ventilation. AS5034 specifies that all cellars and storage rooms without natural ventilation need gas monitors installed. 
Gas monitors must measure carbon dioxide levels and if an inert gas such as argon or nitrogen are also stored or used an oxygen monitor should be used. An audible and visible alarm should be installed both inside and outside the area.
Recommended Products: A50, Ax60+, CO2BUDDY

The entire Analox Food & Beverage line is designed to reliably and accurately measure the presence of carbon dioxide and depletion of oxygen in restaurants, pubs & bars. Our fixed and portable CO2 and O2 monitors are the culmination of forty years worth of research & development, where we have created a range of easy to use, yet innovative monitors that keep your people safe.

Are you looking for the most suitable gas monitor for your pub? Restaurant? Fast food establishment, stadium or bar? You can view the full range of our food and beverage gas solutions below and as always - if you have any questions please get in touch and we will be more than happy to help.

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Carbon dioxide solutions 

Fermentation within the production of alcoholic drinks, storing and bottling of carbonated beverages as well as serving draft beverages all produce and use carbon dioxide (CO2). Within Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP) it can also be used to help preserve food, freeze or chill it.

Carbon dioxide (CO2) cannot be detected by human senses and as little as 0.5% in the atmosphere can affect the human body. Protect yourself and your team by fitting a carbon dioxide (CO2) monitor.

Oxygen Solutions

If you use an inert gas, such as nitrogen (N2) in brewing, dispense applications to make a smooth beer or in modified atmosphere packaging (MAP) to preserve foods by chilling, freezing or pressurizing packaging then you need an oxygen (O2) monitor. 

If a nitrogen (N2) leak occurs it can displace the oxygen (O2) in the air you breathe which can be fatal. Analox offers a choice of wall mount or portable solutions to make sure that doesn’t happen.

Multi Gas solution 

If you are using multiple gases within Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP) or are looking for a dual gas analyzer in your brewery, look no further.

Fun Fact

In wine making, a different type of carbon dioxide is used – dry ice. Dry ice is a condensed and solidified form of carbon dioxide used to cool down bunches of grapes to prevent spontaneous fermentation. Dry ice is typically used because, compared to water, it doesn’t affect the sugar concentration of the grapes themselves.