New generation aseptic packaging machines require more effective and efficient hydrogen peroxide products engineered specifically for each machine type. 

Solvay has a coordinated global approach to the research and development of the INTOREX® AG product range for this market segment. 

 

As part of our Sustainability commitment, our emphasis on product development leads to continuous improvement in our product line, as packaging materials and equipment technologies evolve to meet the increasing demands of consumers and the industry.

 

With the high purity of INTEROX® AG, our customers can increase intervals between cleaning, avoiding unnecessary down-time, reducing costs and increasing productivity at the same time.

 

Our principle is to work in partnership with customers and others to achieve our mutual objectives of safe and effective peroxygen products.

 

See our video below: Safety first!

 

Around the world, aseptic packaging of foodstuffs is growing in popularity with new applications and machines continuously being developed. Key to the success of aseptic packaging is the efficiency of sterilization and the development of faster, more efficient machines.

A little girl holding a tomato

At the conditions used in aseptic packaging systems, hydrogen peroxide is a highly effective sterilizing agent. Its efficacy can be attributed to its strong oxidizing properties. Upon contact with cells, hydrogen peroxide and its free radical derivatives react with membrane lipids and proteins, disrupt cell functions and cause cell membrane rupture. This mode of action results in hydrogen peroxide being a broad spectrum biocide capable of killing a wide range of microorganisms, making it ideal for applications where guaranteed sterilization is required.

Solvay has developed several grades especially dedicated to the sterilisation of containers in the packaging of milk, fruit juice and other foodstuffs. All the grades are sold under the INTEROX ® AG Tradename.

 

The desired quality of hydrogen peroxide used as an aseptic packaging sterilant will depend on the type of machine and the conditions of operation, but in general terms it should be the most “pure” grade available while still meeting the machine’s performance requirements.

 

In accordance with Solvay's permanent objective of offering the best product in each situation, we present the purest grades available on the market. (find more information in our Testimonials)

The use of peroxide hydrogen is of particular benefit in food applications because of its environmental friendly properties ; it decomposes into water and oxygen, leaves little or no residue and, unlike other more traditional disinfectants, does not form harmful by-products.

 

As a result of its antimicrobial performance, its ease of handling and its low dry residue, hydrogen peroxide is now the most widely accepted sterilant for aseptic packaging applications.

Solvay fully recognizes the major challenge that Sustainable Development poses to society.

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Our products

Solvay offers a range of hydrogen peroxide products as aseptic packaging sterilant to support  to the needs of the different types of machines and the conditions of operation.

 

The use of hydrogen peroxide in aseptic packaging operation generally falls into one of three major application methods :

 

Bath application: the packaging material is passed through and immersed in a liquid solution of 30-50% hydrogen peroxide at elevated temperature. The hydrogen peroxide on the material surface is then removed either mechanically or with jets of compressed air, and the material is then formed and filled with a sterile food product and then sealed.

 

Spray application: hydrogen peroxide is atomized through heated nozzles onto the packaging surface to be sterilized, and the packaging is then heated with sterile hot air to evaporate the residual hydrogen peroxide on the package surfaces.

 

Vapor application: hydrogen peroxide is vaporized in the machine and resulting hydrogen peroxide gas is used to sterilize the packaging, without condensation.

 

Application INTEROX®  Aseptic Grades Concentration (%)
Bath INTEROX ® AG BATH / INTEROX ® AG BATH S 35%
Spray/Vapor INTEROX ® AG SPRAY /  INTEROX ® AG SPRAY S / INTEROX® AG Premium 25% or 35%
Bath/Spray/Vapor INTEROX ® AG DUAL 35%

 

Applications

Bath

Bath type machines are those which sterilize the packaging materials by immersion in a bath of hydrogen peroxide prior to being formed and filled with a food product. The hydrogen peroxide is maintained at an elevated temperature (between 65°C and 90°C) in order to improve the sterilization properties. In order to work effectively as a sterilant, hydrogen peroxide temperature, concentration, and contact time must all be maintained properly. “Trade-offs do exist among the three major variables, and are often managed as part of machine design and validation. For example, bath temperature can be increased to some extent to compensate for shorter contact times (as in a higher speed machine).

 

Bath concentration – A key performance factor

 

Hydrogen peroxide concentration in the sterilization bath should maintain a reasonably constant strength throughout a production run. If it falls too low, sterilization efficacy is reduced. If it becomes too high, the integrity of the packaging material (usually card stock) might be affected. Although guidelines vary among machines and manufacturers, a concentration between 30% (w/w) and 45% is typically desired. In addition to a bath concentration’s effects on sterilization and packaging, when concentration varies beyond defined limits it impacts production efficiency. Unplanned bath replacements or adjustments can result in costly downtime, as well as increased chemical consumption and wasted product. A hydrogen peroxide bath should be expected to last for approximately 120 hours of production time prior to the need to shut down the machine and replace the bath.

 

An aseptic packaging bath is a demanding environment for hydrogen peroxide, and several things can affect bath concentration. The major factors influencing bath concentration are :

  1. Evaporation effects
  2. Hydrogen peroxide decomposition
  3. Bath Temperature, which affects both 1. And 2.

 

Even pure hydrogen peroxide grades for aseptic packaging applications do contain trace amounts of impurities that can be left behind upon evaporation. Some of these impurities are actually stabilizers added intentionally, and others are present from the hydrogen peroxide manufacturing process. Deposits left on machines parts can cause major problems for the operator. Small deposits on rollers can damage card stock by scoring as it passes over a roller. Deposits can cause premature wear or failure of other moving pars. In addition, deposits may even find their way into the packaged food product.

 

The type of stabilizer in a hydrogen peroxide solution, as well as the overall purity of the solution have major impact on the amount and the persistence of dry residue. Solvay Chemicals utilizes novel techniques targeted at both of these issues in its products for aseptic packaging.

 

Hydrogen Peroxide – Product selection for bath applications

 

Is a specially designed hydrogen peroxide grade, to be used in the aseptic packaging for bath technologies, with an extended stability at high temperatures, preferably giving at least 120 hours of production without the need to replace the bath.

 

INTEROX® AG BATH 35 S employs a novel stabilizer designed to perform at high temperature which leaves little dry residue upon evaporation. The hydrogen peroxide itself undergoes an extensive, proprietary purification process in order to meet the rigorous standards of purity required for excellent stability and low residue.

 

INTEROX® AG BATH 35 and INTEROX® AG BATH 35S are approved by leading manufacturers OEM's of aseptic filling machines using bath technology.

 

The INTEROX® AG BATH grades comply  :

 

  • with the physicochemical characteristics of the monograph 'Hydrogen Peroxide Solution' in the current European Pharmacopoeia, except assay.
  • with the physicochemical characteristics of the Food Chemicals Codex 5th edition.
  • with the Drinking Water Standard EN 902.
Spray/Vapor

Spray application

 

Spray machines are those which apply hydrogen peroxide to the package surface by atomizing the peroxide through a nozzle and onto the packaging. The hydrogen peroxide solution is normally heated during atomization. Heated, sterile air is then blown past the surfaces to evaporate the residual hydrogen peroxide. The basic principles of effective sterilization with hydrogen peroxide are : the chemical must be combined with heat and high concentration in order to be effective with short contact times. In the case of most hydrogen peroxide spray applications, pre-heated hydrogen peroxide is sprayed onto a surface and is then removed by heating (evaporation).

 

Vapor application

 

In some equipment, the packaging is sterilized by hydrogen peroxide vapor in a true “dry” system, where the chemical does not condense on any package surfaces. Hydrogen peroxide is vaporized separately from the packaging and then applied, rather than sprayed onto the package surface and then evaporated. This method is not as common as the spray technique; however, the desired properties of the hydrogen peroxide used are very similar.

 

Hydrogen peroxide for spray or vapor machines

 

Since hydrogen peroxide is evaporated to dryness in spray or vapor machines, much more emphasis must be placed on the dry residue properties of the peroxide. In addition, the focus on peroxide stability that is critical enough to ensure reasonable shelf life and safety during storage and transport. As a result, more emphasis can be placed on the purity of the chemical when formulations are devised.

 

The most common issue associated with hydrogen peroxide that is sprayed or vaporized is residue left behind upon evaporation. This can lead to plugged spray nozzles, residue left on packaging material, or fouled heat exchangers. Therefore, hydrogen peroxide used in these applications must be exceedingly pure, contain minimal added stabilizers, and those stabilizers added must not leave persistent residue.

 

INTEROX® AG Spray 35 is a specially designed hydrogen grade, to be used in aseptic packaging processes for spray or vapor type applications with a 35% concentration. Occasionally, 25% concentration products are specified for reasons primarily related to hydrogen peroxide contact with some plastic resins used in aseptic packaging. INTEROX® AG Spray 35 was tailored specifically to have low residue levels in order to reduce or eliminate deposits on machine parts.

 

INTEROX® AG Spray 35 S undergoes an extensive, proprietary purification process in order to ensure extremely low dry residues. In addition, INTEROX® AG -Spray-35S is formulated with very low levels of a novel stabilizer, which leaves little or no persistent residue on spray nozzles or heat exchangers.

 

INTEROX® AG Spray 35 and INTEROX® AG Spray 35 S are approved by leading manufacturers (OEM's) of aseptic filling machines using spray or vapor technology.

 

The INTEROX® AG SPRAY grades comply with :

 

  • with the physicochemical characteristics of the monograph 'Hydrogen Peroxide Solution' in the current European Pharmacopoeia, except assay.
  • with the physicochemical characteristics of the Food Chemicals Codex 5th edition
  • with the Drinking Water Standard EN 902.
Dual

Solvay Chemicals has been the first H2O2 producer on the market, having a aseptic grade which can be used in all filling technologies.

 

Bath and spray machines have different requirements with regards to impurities and stabilizers which are present in the product.

 

The INTEROX ® AG DUAL grades can be used in both types of aseptic filling technologies : bath / immersion or spray systems. These products combine the demand of spray machines for a low dry residue together with an excellent stability for bath / immersion systems.

 

INTEROX ® AG DUAL is approved by leading manufacturers (OEM's) of aseptic filling machines using bath, spray or vapor technology.

 

The INTEROX ® AG DUAL grades comply with :

 

  • with the physicochemical characteristics of the monograph 'Hydrogen Peroxide Solution' in the current European Pharmacopoeia, except assay.
  • with the physicochemical characteristics of the Food Chemicals Codex 5th edition.
  • with the Drinking Water Standard EN 902.

INTEROX® AG Satisfied clients - Here’s what two of our customers say about Interox® AG

“Interox® AG is a much better product than the one we used before”

 

“We use Interox® AG-Spray-35S in bulk for our SIG Combibloc machines. In these machines, we fill four different packaging sizes with milk and shakes. The main reason why we have chosen Interox®AG-Spray-35S over the H2O2 product from a competitor is the fact that the amount of residue on our equipment is significantly lower and the machines are a lot easier to clean. This reduces machine downtime and helps us to improve our production yield. Interox®AG-Spray-35S also has environmental benefits. Because the consistency of the scales is lower and the cleaning operation is easier, less water is used for cleaning, reducing the amount of waste water generated in the process. All in all, Interox®AG-Spray-35S is a much better product than the one we used before. On top of that, Solvay always delivers on time and in accordance with safety requirements.”

– D. Carlos Momán, Plant Manager 

   LECHE CELTA

 

“We can fill more packs with Interox® AG”

 

“We chose Interox® AG-Spray-S for the Combibloc-equipment we use for filling packaging with juice products. Previous products caused blockages in the nozzles. We worked with Combibloc and Solvay to find the right grade of H2O2 product and have never looked back since. Reduced downtime is the main reason why we chose Interox® AG-Spray-S. Previously, we had to shut down production after 60 hours for a period of one to three hours. Now we can run up to 100 hours without any problems. In addition, the cost of replacing the vaporizer (a very expensive component) has been significantly reduced. With previous products, due to the high residue left on the equipment, weekly cleaning was a prerequisite. With Interox® AG-Spray-S we can routinely schedule maintenance on a monthly basis on all key items of the equipment. Interox®AG-Spray-S also enables us to produce more packs. Knowing that we normally produce 12.000 packs per hour, we can safely say that we can fill between 12.000 and 36.000 additional packs for every downtime period we can eliminate. In short: the quality of the product is excellent and we wouldn’t want to change anything. Keep up the good work!”

 

– A big soft drinks producer from UK

 

“We strongly recommend our customers to use Interox® AG”

 

“We use Interox® AG-Spray-25S to decontaminate plastic packaging for low-acid and high-acid beverages. The main reason why we prefer working with Interox® AG-Spray-25S is the purity of the product. There are no dry residue deposits during operation, which allows us to avoid any downtime for cleaning purposes. Thanks to the design of our equipment and the quality of the product, we do not need any cleaning cycles at all. As an equipment supplier, we strongly recommend our customers to use Interox® AG-Spray-25. In fact, it is the only product that enables us to guarantee the continuous availability and efficiency of our equipment. One of the key advantages of working with Interox® AG-Spray-25S is cost reduction. We use a dry decontamination technology to avoid water usage. As only a very low quantity of H2O2 is needed, we can offer our customers a solution that is both environmentally friendly and cost-efficient. On top of that, Solvay can offer us excellent support when it comes to technical or commercial development. We have engaged in a strong partnership with Solvay for years now. For instance, they were able to quickly provide us with al the answers we needed regarding the distribution of Interox® AG in countries such as Russia or China.”

 

– Arnaud Poupet, Development Program Manager

   SIDEL

 

View here the Process Flow Diagram

 

Exceptional purity is the key benefit of Solvay’s Interox® AG product range. These very low residue, stabilized hydrogen peroxide formulations are especially developed for aseptic filling equipment.

 

With Interox® AG, you can easily boost productivity in both spray/vapor type and bath/immersion-type filling systems. Interox® AG has very low dry residue values, minimizing residue build-up on nozzles and heaters.The high purity of Interox® AG also means that you can safely increase intervals between cleaning. The result? You can fill more packs with the same quantity of product, reducing costs and increasing productivity at the same time. Using hydrogen peroxide is kind for the environment as well, producing no waste water at all as the products readily break down to just water and oxygen. Knowing that you will not find a more cost-efficient way to boost productivity, using Interox® AG becomes your evident natural choice.

 

INTEROX ® AG, a matter of purity

 

INTEROX ® AG BATH S, INTEROX ® AG SPRAY S and INTEROX ® AG DUAL undergo an extensive, proprietary purification process in order to ensure extremely low dry residues. The patented purification process in combination with a novel stabilizer provides exceptional quality products.

INTEROX® AG Premium

By using the right product in every situation, optimal machine performance can be achieved.

 

Solvay’s INTEROX® AG product range of hydrogen peroxide formulations is known for its exceptional purity and very low residue values. Now Solvay is working on a brand new formulation: INTEROX® AG Premium is a new grade for higher performance in spray machines.

 

  •  Less residue 
  •  Easy to clean 
  •  Less maintenance 
  •  More packs

 

Trial at the R&D Center proved that machines operating with INTEROX® AG Premium during 257 hours, had only few residues on the inner parts. Furthermore, these few residues were easy to clean. Cleaning time is at least diminished by half.

 

After 257 hours of operation, INTEROX® AG Premium gives less residues…

INTEROX® AG Spray 35S         INTEROX® AG Premium 

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… which are easier to clean.

Before cleaning                      After cleaning $

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Consequently, INTEROX® AG Premium was tested successfully at the Arabian Beverage Company (ABC) in Kuwait. During this trial, machines operated during 1 month. The result was clear: the new product gives less residues.

Before industrial trial              After 1 month of industrial trial  

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Watch the testimonial of Solvay’s trial of INTEROX® AG Premium at ABC in Kuwait below. The outcome of the trial is of such transparency that 

INTEROX® AG Premium has been approved by SIG Combibloc, one of the world's leading system suppliers of carton packaging and filling machines for beverages and food. 

 

Additional development is in progress.