Author Topic: Draining and aging racks  (Read 609 times)

Offline mathhag

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Draining and aging racks
« on: May 22, 2014, 08:39:23 AM »
I am hoping someone can direct me to a good source for drainage racks or some kind of food grade plastic that I can cut to fit my aging containers. I have only been making chees for a couple of seasons. I find that any metal corrodes from the acid. I would like to find the right tool. Always makes everything easier.
Any recommendations?
Susan

Offline H-K-J

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Re: Draining and aging racks
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2014, 10:08:40 AM »
I sure there are a few of us who use needle point plastic mats and what some call egg-crate florescent light defuser cut to what ever size we need.
and then there is plastic cheese draining mats you can get from most cheese making suppliers.
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Offline Just Plain Fred

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Re: Draining and aging racks
« Reply #2 on: May 22, 2014, 06:04:27 PM »
I am hoping someone can direct me to a good source for drainage racks or some kind of food grade plastic that I can cut to fit my aging containers. . I find that any metal corrodes from the acid. I would like to find the right tool. Always makes everything easier.
Any recommendations?
Susan


 Susan ,
  Hello... I'm a big fan of everything "Stainless Steel" ... I know that this is the expensive way out ...but it's forever.. At least for us mortals...http://www.sausagemaker.com/14stainlessteelshelfd-5d-10.aspx .. Regards Fred

Offline WovenMeadows

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Re: Draining and aging racks
« Reply #3 on: May 22, 2014, 06:10:22 PM »
Actually, I've become a fan of wood as an aging "rack."

Offline jwalker

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Re: Draining and aging racks
« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2014, 09:32:24 AM »
I agree with H-J-K on the "egg crate" , very affordable , and because of the thickness , it allows fantastic air circulation around the cheese.

It's probably not considered food grade , but I don't see any problem with it for draining cheese.
No..........I'm not a professional CheeseMaker , but I play one on TV.

Offline Just Plain Fred

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Re: Draining and aging racks
« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2014, 03:12:56 PM »
Actually, I've become a fan of wood as an aging "rack."
WM,
 Hello...  Just my 2¢ ... You can't properly "sanitize" wood ...See my solution with the stainless steel rack and drip pan ...Regards Fred

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Offline ArnaudForestier

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Re: Draining and aging racks
« Reply #6 on: June 06, 2014, 06:43:23 PM »
Actually, I've become a fan of wood as an aging "rack."


Woven, say goodbye to that.  1000 years of known history, and likely since at least the Roman times in the French Alps.  Idiots!
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Offline JeffHamm

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Re: Draining and aging racks
« Reply #7 on: June 06, 2014, 09:01:08 PM »
I know there is work that shows that wood has natural antibacterial properties.  At the Auckland Science Fair last year, one of the entries (that won a 1st place, and a special prize) was called "Killer Woods", and she compared contamination found on cutting boards, 3 made from different types of wood, and 1 made of plastic.  The wood boards were all below measurable amounts of pathogens (so she couldn't rank which wood was 1st, 2nd, and 3rd most effective), but the "anti-bacterial plastic" one was measurable, and therefore the worst.  She did the testing in the School of Biology at the University (a lab there assisted her), and there was some background literature to go with it. 

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Just did a quick search and found this page: http://faculty.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/faculty/docliver/Research/cuttingboard.htm

And here's a link to a published paper by Cliver (who has passed away now, but who contributes to our conversations today): http://www.treenshop.com/Treenshop/ArticlesPages/SafetyOfCuttingBoards_Article/CliverArticle.pdf
« Last Edit: June 06, 2014, 09:09:47 PM by JeffHamm »
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Offline ArnaudForestier

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Re: Draining and aging racks
« Reply #8 on: June 07, 2014, 09:20:32 AM »
Thanks Jeff, great work.  The frustration is that none of it matters.  UW itself, not known to be "rogue" on this issue, released a report that itself concluded wood can be part of a safe operation.  The FDA simply ignores this good science, and goes with received, crappy "wisdom."
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Offline JeffHamm

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Re: Draining and aging racks
« Reply #9 on: June 07, 2014, 01:51:08 PM »
Committees make decisions for all sorts of reasons.  Rules can be made based upon how easy they are to describe so people can follow them or they can be made complex to account for all the exceptions.  Either way, nobody is satisfied because either  the simplified rule makes mistakes or the complicated rules are complicated to understand.   

What strikes me is the implications in the reports that plastic could be less safe, because cuts become impossible to clean properly, while wood's antibacterial nature (trees protect themselves from wood, the same processes still work in cut wood) means even when cut the grooves neutralize the pathogens.  Now, that's for cutting boards, not shelves, and it's looking at bacteria, not fungus or yeasts, etc.  There are lots of things one has to consider.  I would think a university with a food science course could look at this issue in a similar way, or is the UW you mentioned University of Wisconsin, meaning it's been done already?  It might be of use to try and get artisan cheese makers put together some cash to put together some PhD scholarships (enough to cover the students tuition and some living expenses like food and shelter) to support students in a food science course investigating safe materials for the aging of cheese.  Get 20 or 30 small cheesemaking companies together, and the cost per company is probably in the $1000 range per year for supporting one PhD student (well, I'm thinking tuition costs in Canada or New Zealand, the US is more expensive I believe, at least some of the Universities are that is).  Anyway, the key is to make sure the funds are provided with no expectations of what the results will be, i.e. you don't fund them to prove wood is good, you fund them to investigate materials, traditional and modern, to determine best hygiene and food safety practice.  You could request that a copy of the thesis and any publications be sent to you (the scholarship suppliers) - not for approval to be published, etc, but rather, you want to see the results once they are finalized by publication etc.  (A lot of companies try and get Universities to do research for them, but then control the publication of the findings - this is bad as it skews the information upon which decisions are made and warps our understanding of the topic in question.  Universities are about generating knowledge, if a company wants to take advantage of the high concentration of researchers and thinkers, then great, but they should pay for it by losing control of the right to disseminate that knowledge.  If they want to keep hold of the knowledge, they can hire graduates and pay them to work in their own R&D unit.  Hmmmm, I'm digressing, aren't I? :) )

That being said, getting $1000.00 / year for 3-5 years (a scholarship typically runs 3-5 years) from one small company would be a mission, trying to get 20 or 30 of them?  Might be impossible.  More realistically, talk to local University Professors who do food safety type stuff, and see if you can interest them in the question.  They'll then run with it.
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Offline Al Lewis

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Re: Draining and aging racks
« Reply #10 on: June 07, 2014, 06:53:07 PM »
Been using these.  Seem to work great and get cleaned great in the dishwasher.