Food and Beverage Industry

The discovery of stainless steel early in the 20th century was a milestone event for the food and drink processing industries. This wonderfully hygienic and durable alloy has become a favourite in domestic kitchens and for the very same reasons, it is the material of choice in industries as diverse as the processing of milk and dairy products, beer and wine making, confectionery, cooked meats and many, many more.

In this modern age, we take it as a reality that much of our food will be processed, sanitised and packaged under hygienic conditions before it arrives on our plate. Nevertheless, convenience foods will never completely destroy the art and satisfaction of preparing and cooking our own meals from fresh ingredients. Until fairly recently, stainless steel ovens, cooking utensils and tableware were regarded as an expensive luxury in the modern kitchen. Good design, mass production and competition have changed all of that so that the householder can enjoy all of the benefits and attributes of this remarkable family of materials.

Today, more than 30% of all stainless steel produced goes into products related to the food and beverage sector. In this section of the library, there are publications which give guidance on grade selection as well as the importance of hygienic design and fabrication methods for food and beverage handling equipment.

Safe Food Preparation Using Stainless Steel

The continuing safety of using stainless steel in food preparation has been confirmed in an independent study following the adoption of new test criteria across Europe.

The Council of Europe’s (CoE) guidelines for metals and alloys in food contact materials defines specific release limits (SRLs) for metals and includes a new, more aggressive test to simulate use in food preparation.

The authors demonstrated that all of the grades passed the test for the relevant metallic elements prescribed in the CoE guidelines. A summary of the report can be downloaded at in EnglishChinese or Japanese.

A more detailed technical summary of the report can be downloaded from The full report is also available from

Published: 10/11/2015
Last modified: 10/11/2015

Stainless Steel in Agricultural Applications

From a simple feeding pail to the most advanced fully robotised milking equipment, stainless steel is found on farms in numerous applications, where it is an alternative to plastics, light metal and above all galvanised steel.

This brochure from ISSF explains why stainless steel in used in agricultural applications and highlights applications in fences, gates and partitions, feeding, watering, electrical and mechanical equipment, skin care, dairy farming, ancillary equipment and storage tanks for slurry and waste water.

Download brochure here

Published: 2/12/2014
Last modified: 2/12/2014

Stainless Steel in SelfService Machines

Self-service machines – dispensers, vending machines, ticket machines etc. – must meet a number of requirements. Stainless steel has an ideal profile and is available in many different suitable grades.
This brochure explains why stainless steel is an ideal material to be used in self-service machines and highlights some common applications like vending machine fronts, keypads, mechanical parts, beverage dispensers, drinking water dispensers and vending machines, milk vending stations, ticket machines and access control and coin-operated controls.

Download the brochure here

Published: 18/11/2014
Last modified: 18/11/2014

Best Practice in Cleaning and Disinfecting Stainless Steel Commercial Food Equipment

This video introduces the best practices in cleaning and disifecting stainless steel commercial food equipment. There are 7 examples: shiny items, work surfaces, fridge, oven, cooking top, fryer, floor.

See the video here

Published: 24/10/2014
Last modified: 24/10/2014

Stainless Steel New Applications - Food and Beverage

The following examples from the ISSF Books of New Applications 2007, 2009 and 2016 show some of the possible applications with stainless steel for the food and beverage industry (clicking on the application will open a pdf with more information).

Published: 13/9/2013
Last modified: 13/9/2013

Nickel Institute publications on Food, Beverage and Consumer Goods

The Nickel Institute has published several studies on Food, Beverage and Consumer Goods. The following are available:

  • Cleanability in relation to bacterial retention on unused and abraded domestic sink materials
  • Application of impressed current cathodic protection to stainless steel hot-water storage tanks
  • Effect of wiping and spray wash temperature on bacterial retention of abraded domestic sink surface
  • Effectiveness of sanitation with quaternary ammonium compound or chlorine on stainless steel and other domestic food-preparation surfaces
  • Cleaning stainless steel surfaces prior to sanitary service
  • Sinks of stainless clean best, beat bacteria 14030 Water tank built to last 60 years
  • Systemic nickel: the contribution made by stainless steel cooking utensils
  • Purity of food cooked in stainless steel utensils

Download these documents here

Published: 5/7/2012
Last modified: 5/7/2012

Doors and Gates of Stainless Steel

Fire doors have to be able to withstand extremely high temperatures. The materials that are made from and the type of construction are of the utmost importance. Stainless steel, with a gleaming matt finish, or a ground patterned surface, can relieve the bulk and give a pleasant appearance.

Source: Euro Inox

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Published: 11/5/2012
Last modified: 11/5/2012

Floor Drains for Interior Applications

In industrial, pharmaceutical and catering applications, drainage systems have to meet the toughest standards of safety and hygiene. And they have to be cost-effective. For these reasons stainless steel is generally the material of choice for floor gullies, drains and grating.

Source: Euro Inox

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Published: 10/5/2012
Last modified: 10/5/2012

Stainless Steel in the Food & Beverage Industry

This Euro Inox publication explains why stainless steel is the dominant material in the food industry for all types of processing equipment and gives helpful information on material selection, fabrication, surface finish, design principles and relevant European standards.

Source: Euro Inox

This document is available in English, Czech, Polish and Turkish. [clicking on the language will open the pdf]

Published: 10/5/2012
Last modified: 10/5/2012

Stainless Steel for the Food Processing Industries

Stainless steels are widely used in food and beverage manufacturing and processing industries for manufacture, bulk storage and transportation, preparation and presentation applications. Depending on the grade of stainless steel selected, they are suitable for most classes of food and beverage products.

Source: British Stainless Steel Association

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Published: 10/5/2012
Last modified: 10/5/2012

Moly Does the Job – Hot Water Pipe

A large, international, food manufacturing company encountered through-wall leaks in a Type 304 stainless steel hot water line after only two years of service. An upgrade to Mo-containing 6Mo stainless steel solved the problem. Nicole Kinsman, formerly of Technical Marketing Resources, consultants to IMOA, is the author. (61 Kb pdf)

Source: International Molybdenum Association

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Published: 10/5/2012
Last modified: 10/5/2012

Stainless Steel in Hygienic Applications

Paper originally delivered at the BSSA Conference 'Stainless Solutions for a Sustainable Future' held in Rotherham on 3rd April 2003. This paper discusses applications for stainless steels in beverage dairy and food, drinking water supply, medical devices and pharmaceutical industry applications.

Source: British Stainless Steel Association

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Published: 10/5/2012
Last modified: 10/5/2012

Stainless Steel for Hygiene

Stainless steel is a standard material for the most demanding hygienic applications - in the home, in industry, in healthcare.

Open this animation

Published: 10/5/2012
Last modified: 10/5/2012

Commercial Food Equipment - The Ferritic Solution

The world of commercial food equipment has been particularly hit by the volatile nickel price and its effect on the price of nickel-containing stainless steels. The inevitable swing away from nickel-containing grades towards nickel-free ‘ferritic’ grades is well in motion and, happily, ferritics have proved the perfect technical and economic answer in many application fields.

Available in English and Chinese. (clicking on the language will open the pdf)

A video on the cleaning of food equipment is available here

Published: 10/5/2012
Last modified: 10/5/2012

Stainless Steel in the Dairy Industry

The modern dairy industry requires the use of cleanable, corrosion-resistant stainless steel equipment to meet the needs of milk product consumers everywhere. The latest brochure in the Sustainable Stainless series explains the role of stainless steels in the dairy industry and how they contribute to a sustainable solution for the human diet.

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Published: 10/5/2012
Last modified: 10/5/2012

Stainless steel in filtration

Filtration is part of our daily life … and stainless steel is the material of choice for filtration. In this animation you can find out how, why and where!

See the animation

Published: 10/5/2012
Last modified: 10/5/2012

Thames Gateway Water Treatment

The first water desalination plant in the UK, the Thames Gateway Water Treatment Works in East London, opens in 2010. It will treat water from the brackish waters of the River Thames, producing up to 140 million litres of clean, fresh, drinking water each day during times of drought or extended periods of low rainfall, or to maintain supplies in the event of an incident at other water treatment facilities. Within the plant, saline river water passes through lamella clarifiers to remove solid particles. The clarifiers are large, open tanks containing a coarse filter media that is supported by a grillage of 78 stainless steel I-beams.

Source: Team Stainless

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Published: 10/5/2012
Last modified: 10/5/2012

Hygienic Importance of Stainless Steel in Developing Countries

Stainless steel products play an active role in improving the hygiene in restaurants, public kitchen, schools, local health centers etc. This is so, especially in emerging markets such as India, Mexico, China and the likes (Developing countries).

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Published: 8/5/2012
Last modified: 8/5/2012