Wooden Shelves in a Maturing Room

It is so easy to get bogged down!  We want to build two new maturing rooms, one for a natural rinded cheese and one other.  Having been to a fair few other dairies and looked at their maturing rooms, everyone has wooden shelving.  Stainless steel is so expensive!

Now, we have a grade A at BRC and they are very particular about wood.  I can even quote from the appropriate section from Issue 5 of the BRC:

4.8.5 ‘In areas where a risk assessment (yes, the dreaded risk assessment, again!) has identified the potential for product contamination from wood, the use of wood shall be excluded.  Where the use of wood cannot be avoided, and the risk is managed, the condition of the wood shall be regularly checked to ensure it is in good condition and clean’.

I have just run it by our BRC auditor and he has said we can use wooden shelves as long as they are in good condition, no sharp edges and we include it as part of our documented checks.  So there you go!

Comments 0

  1. I use wooden sushi mats in my cheese cave (a modified household fridge), which i’m hoping won’t be too much of a problem when I finally get round to sorting out the health check thing from the local council.

    Hopefully it won’t involve too many changes, as i’ve only recently started making cheese i’d actually consider good enough to sell!

  2. Post

    Hi again Andy, good for you. Your pictures of cheese on your blog look fabulous, like you could almost smell them, so good luck with commercialising your operation. I think if the bamboo mats show any signs of splintering, you may have to replace them. If you intend to manufacture cheese to sell to members of the public, you will have to apply to your local EHO for an approval number which will involve a lot of initial form filling and on-going form filling to check on temperatures, metal and sharps, cleaning, lab tests, traceability etc. By the way, where did you get those white plastic looking mats from? Best wishes, Iona

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