Saturday, 10 September 2011

Sample Field Report for a Food Industry


1.1 Background

AAA FOOD ENTERPRIZES is a small scale factory started way back in 1990. It deals in producing squash from both fruits and juice-imitation flavors.

1.1.2 Location

It’s located in Kampala. It is an in-home cottage factory.

1.1.3 Ownership

It is a private enterprise owned by Mrs.AAA since 1990. It is registered as an “enterprise” under the laws governing registration of companies in Uganda.

1.1.4 Why it was started

The initial objective was to raise income for the owner that would help her cater her family. After fulfilling the above objective successfully, the proprietor now has another objective of growing it to a medium-scale and later large scale juice processing factory that can achieve many ends including providing employment to the youth.

1.1.5 Products

The enterprise deals in drinks of two types;

1. “Partly natural” squashes of pineapple, mango, passion fruit and Oranges. These are branded as “AAA”.

2. Purely artificial imitation drinks of different flavors namely; pineapple, mango, passion fruit, oranges, straw berry and black currant. These products are branded as “DDD”.

1.1.6 Organization Structure of the enterprise

The company is currently fully managed and run by one person, the proprietor, with the rest being ordinary workers. She takes all the key decisions and guides all the operations and proceedings of the business. She currently employs three kinds of employees, the production workers (3), a marketer (1) and a shop keeper of the outlet in Kampala town (1).

1.1.7 Challenges faced

The proprietor had faced several problems with this business including;

1. Spoilage of the squash especially partially natural pineapple and passion fruit based squashes.

2. Lack of proper onsite technical guidance about her operations.

3. Theft of money especially by the marketers that she usually charged with duties of marketing the products, delivering them to customers (squash) and collecting the money after sales have been made.

1.1.8 Objectives of the internship

The major objectives ware;

1. To provide technical guidance on processing, quality control and quality assurance.

2. To find a solution to the spoilage of squash.

The minor objectives were to;

1. To identify the cause of spoilage (swelling of the plastic bottles).

2. To devise means of solving the problem.

3. To establish and strengthen the enterprise’s quality control and quality assurance system.


In order to identify the problems, the intern used observation and verbal interaction to get to know the details of the processing operations. The section includes detailed information about the processes and facilities at AAA enterprises.

2.1 Raw materials, procurement and Delivery

The raw materials used include;

a) Fruits namely passion fruit, Oranges, Pineapples and Mangoes. These are used to make the AAA brand type of squashes.

b) Imitation flavors and food colors. These are used to make the DDD brand and to enhance the flavor and color of natural fruit based squashes.

c) Portable water that is purified using a water purifier which employs U.V light and a carbon filter. The purifier removes microbes, suspended organic matter and sterilizes the water. It is this purified water that is used in mixing the squashes since cold filling is done.

2.2 Delivery and storage

On delivery, the fruits are washed and prepared for pulping. In case they are not worked upon, they are stored in the enclosure till the next day. However this is rare. Pulping is done using a fabricated pulper made of stainless steel. It’s used for oranges, passion fruit and pineapples.

2.3 Raw material Treatment

There is little control on the quality of raw materials. They are bought from Owino market from middle men who purchase them from farmers in the growing areas. Quality control is only controlled after purchase. They do sort out all the damaged and injured fruits, and use the rest. The fruits are washed 3 consecutive times, cut into halves (peeled and sliced for pineapples) and then pulped. The pulp is preserved by boiling (pasteurization) and application of chemical preservation (sodium benzoate at levels of 0.02%). It is then hot filled into plastic containers that are tightly filled after. This pulp can last for over 4 months according to the proprietor.

Note: From the pulp, a portion is always drawn off and used in production of AAA brand as and when required. The Period of use ranges from one to four months.
In the above processes;
-Normally 100 liter batches are mixed and the above steps are followed. However the following are to note.
1. The natural fruit is pasteurized at about 60o C, a temperature inadequate to kill pathogenic microorganisms and significantly reduce the microbial load.
2. Preservatives are weighed, mixed with hot water and placed into the mixing drum.0.05% benzoate and 0.02% potassium sorbate is used.
3. Using a wooden spoon, the mix is stirred to dissolve the ingredients and thoroughly distribute them. This can easily introduce microbes into the juice as it’s not disinfected even between batches being mixed.
4. Packaging is treated as follows.
a). Bottles are Rinsed in a batch of water. This water is only changed after realizing it’s dirty (on changing color). The bottles are now placed in the same bag they occupied before and then carried to the processing room. They are laid besides a basin in which filling is done.
b). Covers are washed and left soaked in water (that is often not clean) from where they are screwed onto the bottles.
2.5 Facilities and Design
2.5.1 Machines
·  Fabricated Blender. This is made of stainless steel and used to mix CMC and hot water. The mixture is stored and used for 2-3 days.
·  Fabricated fruit pulper for mangoes, passion fruit and pineapples. This is electrically powered and used to generate fruit pulp from fruits. Prior to use, it is washed with hot water to disinfect it.
·  A fabricated boiler/kettle/batch pasteurizer (not in use due to high electric power requirements). This has a mixer and a tap to release the contents into the filling bucket.
·  A sensitive weighing scale powered by a battery to accurately weigh preservatives.
2.5.2 Storage facilities
·  A cupboard used to store preservatives and other additives that are not currently in use.
·  Raw material store for;
-Plastic bottles and Box cartons
-fruit concentrate, approximately 10x10 feet.
2.5.3 Processing facilities and equipment
There is a processing room that is approximately 10X13feet. This holds all the processing equipment and utensils, and the personnel engaged in processing. With exception of pasteurization, all other processing operations take place in this room. Pasteurization is done in the kitchen that is just near to the processing room. This has a local well built stove using wood fuel. A glass thermometer (max. 110oC) is used for controlling pasteurization temperatures. Other facilities in the processing room include; Filter-cloths that are pink/ green/ blue colored; Plastic drums, basins, buckets, jugs and other containers for use during mixing and filling; a large heavy gauge polythene sheets that is laid down on the ground during packing among others.
2.5.4 Water supply and treatment
There is a supply of piped portable water from National water and Sewerage Cooperation. The water is purified using water purifier that uses a carbon filter and U.V light to purify and disinfect water.
2.5.5 Dressing material
The enterprise equips its workers with white over coats, head gears and mouth pieces.
2.5.6 Toilet
This is found besides the processing room and in a good state of hygiene. It clean and provisions for soap and water for washing hands exist on the door way. The area out side this acts as the change room.
The faults realized about the design and process operations are summarized in the table below together with the corrections that can be made.

With the above observations, I conclude that this enterprise can be helped by;
1.      Shifting from the current situation to the desired situation as indicated in the observations’ section above.
2.      Educating them about Good Manufacturing processes especially hygiene and sanitation aspects, to ensure that they appreciate them, commit to and adhere to them.
3.      Drawing up a HACCP plan for the processes they under take that is relevant to their area and condition of work (Appendix 1&2).
4.      Coming up with standard operating procedures for their process operations and Hygiene and Sanitation (Appendix 3).
5.      Obtaining equipment and materials that can allow them meet basic hygienic conditions and sanitation standards, as elaborated in the table below.
Suggested requirements for AAA FOOD ENTERPRIZES required for it to make its processes controllable and hygienic.



Estimated cost per unit

White gum boots

White aprons

White gloves

White muslin cloths

Sensitive weighing scale

Digital Refractometer

Digital thermometer

Digital Ph meter

Filling / mixing tank with a tap

Stainless steel table or other food grade

Other items to fix

Ceilliing in the processing room

Smoothen the floor, if possible with Tarrazo