Working with food grade stainless steel

Stainless steel is not one generic material; there is a wide range of metals available which can be classified as stainless steel. From a fabrication and tube manipulation perspective, it is vitally important to ensure the correct grade of stainless steel is being used in every project, so that the finished product will be perfect for its intended use. This becomes critical when working with food grade stainless steel.

A grading system is used to classify stainless steel types in terms of their composition and make up. In terms of the European standardised measurement, it’s usually Type 304 (often shortened to T304) which is referred to as food grade. While certain other grades meet the criteria, including Types 316, 420, and 430, T304 is the only one which is purely specified with the intention of having direct contact with food and drink.

There are a number of criteria which must be met with respect to the composition of T304 food grade stainless steel, but the main ones are that it must be at least 50% steel and the maximum level of permitted carbon is 0.8%. In order to be safe for use with food, T304 steel must be rust resistant and durable, as well as being relatively easy to clean and sanitise. One of the most important considerations for us is to ensure that these qualities are not undermined by tube manipulation work.

We have built an excellent name and reputation for tube manipulation, and are known for delivering a perfect and professional service every time. Our work with T304 food grade stainless steel is very much at the forefront of this. By gaining a clear and comprehensive understanding of the end use of tubes that we are contracted to manipulate and bend, we can ensure that our processes do not undermine the optimal level of production excellence. Whether we are carrying out tube reduction, expansion, drilling, bending or any other kind of alterations, we will always preserve the strength and integrity of the material to the highest degree.