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What are the differences between food grade lubes?

Food grade lubricants are oils which are safe to be used in the food processing industry. They are typically used in machinery which will be used to process and manufacture food for the mass market.

When buying food grade lubricants from companies like Fuchs and Mobil, you may have noticed that they are available in three different classifications. Here we will discuss each classification and the differences between them:

H1 food grade lubricants

H1 food grade lubricants are oils that can only be used in situations where a trace amount of the substances could incidentally find their way into the food they are being used to produce. According to current regulations, no more than 10 parts per million are allowed before it is deemed unsafe to be eaten by the consumer.

It is also the case that H1 food grade lubricants are only permitted to contain a strictly controlled number of thickeners, base stocks and additives, which is why it is always important to buy from a reputable company like Mobil who will always ensure that their food lubricants meet current requirements.

H2 food grade lubricants

H2 food lubricants are permitted for use in food-processing machinery, only if there is no chance that they will ever come into contact with any food. H2 food lubricants must never contain the following:

  • Heavy metals
  • Carcinogens
  • Teratogens
  • Mutagens
  • Mineral acids

Due to these restrictions, it is very important to check your H2 food lubricants before bringing them into your food processing factory.

H3 food grade lubricants

H3 lubricants are required to be as safe as possible because they are lubricants that may come into direct contact with food. This means that they can only ever contain ingredients which have been approved for human consumption, such as soybean or corn oil. They are most commonly used to clean trolleys, hooks and other things which will directly touch food products.

As has already been mentioned, it is very important that you buy food grade lubricants from a reputable source and that you check each and every batch before use, as this is the only way that you can ensure you are meeting the current regulations. Brands such as Mobil and Fuchs in particular are known for manufacturing very good food grade lubricants of all varieties for a very reasonable price.

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