Sanitizers for dip tank and chiller systems

Dip tank and chiller systems use chlorine, chlorine dioxide or peracetic acid to achieve sanitization. In fresh produce, dip tanks are used to remove surface contamination, such as soil or decay, prior to packing or further processing.

In poultry processing, the USDA-FSIS requires broiler carcasses to be chilled to less than 4⁰C within 4, 6 or 8 hours of slaughter depending on carcass size. Immersion chilling is commonly used to achieve this as it effectively lowers the total microbial load on the birds whilst cooling the carcass.

Tanks and chillers are therefore high-risk areas for cross-contamination between batches, an example of this would be if a Salmonella-positive flock is processed. It is therefore critical to maintain sanitizer concentrations in the chiller or dip tanks to decrease pathogen survival. Unfortunately, many traditional test methods are unsuitable because of the high levels of organic, particulate and coloured matter in the sample.


  • Get repeatable and reliable results each time. Kemio minimises user input to deliver consistent results from all operators.
  • Reduce uncertainty of test results by enabling operators to act on clear pass/fail results based on your specification.
  • Kemio is suitable for all users, with clear visual instructions which requires user training. Clear visual instructions guide the user and minimises chances for error.
  • Suitable for all sample types, Kemio is not affected by coloured or turbid samples.
  • Reduce expensive laboratory tests with Kemio spot checks.
  • Measure free chlorine, combined chlorine, total chlorine, chlorine dioxide, chlorite and PAA on one instrument.
  • Personalise your Kemio by adding your unique test and application information to improve traceability and provide a complete dataset.
  • Go paperless and protect your data to meet your compliance requirements. The integrated data log summarises 10,000 results to provide a traceable, auditable dataset.
Can I use DPD for testing Dip Tanks and Chillers?

The low measurement range for DPD means high dilutions often need to be performed whilst the presence of particulate matter, fats and coloured materials can strongly interfere with colorimetric testing. Kemio technology minimises user input and is not affected by solids or colour in the sample, providing more control of sanitizers in critical process areas.

For a full analysis of the best test methods for food and beverage applications, click here to view our article. 

What are the drawbacks of using a drop count kit for peracetic acid?

Drop count kits are a popular method for measuring peracetic acid (PAA) but they are reliant on the capability and concentration of the user. The counting of very high numbers of drops, increases the chance of user error and lengthens test time.

As with DPD testing, the colour change in the method can be subjective and dependent on the operator and/or ambient light conditions. Many kits do not fully compensate for hydrogen peroxide interference, creating false positives.

For a full analysis of the best test methods for food and beverage applications, click here to view our article.

What is the best sanitizer to use for Poultry chiller disinfection?

There are a number of sanitizers used for chiller disinfection, each have their own benefits and drawbacks. Popular sanitizers include chlorine, chlorine dioxide and PAA. There is no industry wide standard and the use of a sanitizer will vary depending on the producer, process, buyer and regulator.

Chlorine is one of the most common and cost-effective disinfectants used in chiller water, safely preventing cross-contamination between batches of poultry so long as water pH is carefully controlled. Chlorine dioxide is more expensive but has shown greater efficacy at reducing pathogens on the surface of poultry products, even with much lower dosing concentrations compared to chlorine.

The use of peracetic acid is becoming more popular in poultry chiller systems, largely because it shows good efficacy at preventing cross-contamination and reducing surface pathogens on poultry, with no harmful by products formed.

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Why Kemio Technology?

Kemio technology offers significant advantages compared to alternative techniques for sanitizer control in food and beverage. Unlike traditional methods, Kemio has no user subjectivity and minimal user input which minimizes potential operator errors and variation in results.