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On-Site Generation (OSG) Technology for Beverage Industry Sanitation

On-Site Generation (OSG) Technology for Beverage Industry Sanitation

Environmentally Sustainable Sanitizing Option Saves Time and Money

In beverage bottling and canning plants, Clean-in-Place (CIP) is used to clean various product lines such as syrup and water lines for a variety of reasons including flavor carryover prevention and microbial control. CIP also eliminates organic residues like precipitated proteins, carbohydrates, fats, minerals and other contaminants that harbor bacteria and may lead to microbial induced corrosion (MIC).

While in-situ CIP is faster than older, more traditional methods that require disassembly for cleaning, it can still be one of the more time-consuming aspects of plant operation and maintenance. Time lost to CIP is also valuable lost production time. As a result, many producers are constantly looking for ways to reduce their CIP cycle times without sacrificing safety, complexity or burdensome additional cost. By using On-Site Generation (OSG) of oxidant for CIP, beverage processing plants can increase production time with a rapid three-step cold CIP process.

MIOX’s advanced mixed oxidant system technology, which has been used for over 15 years in 30 countries, is ideal for CIP beverage processing. The process reduces costs by generating sanitizer on site, on demand, increasing efficiency and increasing valuable beverage production time. The mixed oxidant CIP cleaning solution is an environmentally sustainable and single-component solution that replaces 4- and 5-step CIP processes with a rapid 3-step cold-CIP process consisting of rinse, treatment, and final rinse. MIOX’s nonthermal technology reduces energy consumption, and the rapid cleaning cycle significantly improves beverage facility production rates.

Benefits of OSG Mixed Oxidants for Beverage Processing

On-site generation offers significant sanitation benefits for beverage processing, including increased beverage production, chemical cost savings, improved safety, more effective sanitation, and greener applications.

Cost Savings

Increased beverage production time using the 3-step OSG CIP process can result in significant margin improvement, chemical cost savings, and the non-thermal cleaning method reduced energy consumption. Because there is no need to continuously purchase expensive chlorine chemicals, OSGs typically produce chlorine at a much lower cost than traditional delivery methods as the only consumables are salt and electricity used to generate the chemical. In fact, many beverage plants will already have high-quality food-grade salt available, simplifying procurement of the only “chemical” required for the generator, only salt and electricity. Decreased transportation and safety-related costs, and lower insurance premiums offer additional savings. Although OSG systems can present a larger up-front capital equipment cost, most beverage processing plants realize a return on their investment in OSG equipment in a very short period of time.

Improved Safety

Produced on-site, on demand, the mixed oxidant solution is an inherently safer beverage CIP disinfectant, using only salt, water, and power to generate disinfectant. The solution produced has a relatively low concentration with moderate pH, unlike other “quick CIP” chemicals such as peracetic acid. Without hazardous chemicals transported, generated or stored, MIOX offers superior safety for beverage plant personnel and the community.

Improved Performance

Since MIOX mixed oxidants are highly effective at eliminating biofilm, bacterial contamination is reduced or eliminated and disinfectant requirements are reduced; and a more durable disinfectant residual safely prevents recontamination. Taste and odor carry-over are eliminated when switching from one beverage to the next, plus the solution is easily rinsed from the system, eliminating residual “chlorine” taste and odor quickly. With fewer organics in beverage distribution piping, fewer disinfection by-products are formed and microbial-induced corrosion (MIC) is reduced. Compatibility of the solution with existing materials of construction (304 and 316 stainless steel, etc) are excellent and below industry standards for corrosion.

Environmentally Sustainable

Compared to traditional chlorination methods, OSGs offer greener operations. In addition to the reduction in use and potential accidental release of toxic chemicals, transportation of chemicals from factories to the beverage processing plant is reduced. Many purchased sanitizers are diluted in water to make handling safer, but the dilution water requires transportation, often significantly more weight and volume than the salt needed for OSG processes. This reduces the carbon footprint of the plant since less fossil fuel is needed to supply the plant with disinfectant.

How It Works – the Details

Based on decades-old scientific principles, on-site generators (OSGs) apply electricity to a solution of salt and water, which produces chlorine and other oxidant species. OSGs have a number of industrial applications - including providing regulatory approved disinfectants in the beverage process, power plants, and swimming pools – and are used to treat municipal water to US EPA drinking water standards.


Figure 1
Illustration of some of the basic components of an OSG including
(a) water softener, (b) brine tank, (c) brine pump, (d) water heater/chiller,
(e) electrolytic cell and cell controller, (f) oxidant tank,(g) metering pump, and (i) hydrogen vents.


OSGs produce chlorine when a solution of sodium chloride is passed through an electrolytic cell and electricity is added. Incoming water goes through an ion exchange water softener to remove calcium. Softened water feeds the electrolytic cell while a soft water sidestream fills a brine tank, which generates a concentrated salt solution. The near-saturated brine is then injected into the softened water stream entering the electrolytic cell. When the dilute salt solution is inside the electrochemical cell, current passes through the cell producing a strong oxidant solution. After exiting the electrolytic cell, the oxidant solution is stored in an oxidant tank.

The electrolytic cell is fundamental to the OSG (See Figure 2). Electrolytic cells consist of two electrodes, the anode and cathode, designed so that both make contact with the mixed water and brine solution. A voltage is applied to the cell so that current flows through the cell, causing chemical reactions to take place at the surfaces of both electrodes, producing the disinfectants. Oxidation reactions are carried out at the anode where two chloride ions (Cl-) are stripped of one electron each to produce chlorine which is dissolved in the solution.


Overall Reaction: NaCl + H2O -> NaOCl + H2



Figure 2
Diagram showing the different electrochemical reactions
that take place inside of electrolytic cells that OSGs use.


The geometric, hydraulic and power configuration of the cell makes it possible to produce oxidants other than chlorine that can provide enhanced removal of microbiological contaminants. The strong chlor-oxygen based solution is delivered to the oxidant storage tank at a pH of 9, thereby reducing corrosion effects in CIP piping. Chlorine production is balanced by the reduction reactions that occur at the cathode where water (H2O) is converted into hydroxide ions (OH-) and hydrogen gas (H2). Hydrogen gas in the form of bubbles is produced during electrolysis at the cathode. Passive and active ventilation systems remove the gas from the OSG and piping before it can enter the oxidant storage tanks, thereby providing the maximum in system safety.

Using on-site generation mixed oxidant technology for CIP reduces costs, improves performance, and offers a safer, more environmentally sustainable method than other beverage sanitation methods. The rapid treatment cycle – rinse, treat, final rinse – saves time and money by increasing plant production. By generating the sanitizer on site with common consumables (salt and water) caustic chemicals are eliminated thereby improving plant safety and environmental sustainability.

About MIOX Corporation

MIOX Corporation (www.miox.com) is focused on solving one of the world's most pressing issues: the need for affordable, safe, and healthy water. MIOX's patented on-site water disinfection technology safely and economically generates either hypochlorite or advanced mixed oxidant using just salt, water and power, replacing the need to purchase, transport and store dangerous chemicals. MIOX is safely used in over 30 countries for public drinking water systems, water reuse projects, and non-municipal applications including the food and beverage, power, and aquatics and leisure industries.