Drum It Up! Steel Drum Industry News, Trends, and Issues

Archive for November, 2020

Report Issued by RIPA on US Reconditioning Activity

November 24th, 2020 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: Associations, Industry News, Skolnik Newsletter

Reusable packagings continue to thrive in the global economy. To understand the breakdown of the usage of these packagings, the Reuseable Industrial Packaging Association (RIPA) has released a biennial report on industrial container reconditioning in the US. The report presents summary data on the annual production of reconditioned steel and plastic 55-gallon drums as well as 275- and 330-gallon composite “intermediate bulk containers” (IBCs). Data reported is for calendar year 2019. This report also profiles the container reconditioning industry in terms of industry practices, processes used, equipment used, employee training, markets served, customer service and regulatory compliance. The association last conducted a similar survey for calendar year 2017 as well as other surveys every 2 years preceding that date.

“We believe this biennial report is useful to RIPA members as well as other interested parties in seeing trends in production,” says Technical Director C.L. Pettit. The report can be used to benchmark other packaging businesses,” explained Pettit. “The RIPA study is the only one of its kind produced by the industry itself,” he added. Click here to see the entire report.

Free HazMat Training Webinars from DOT

November 17th, 2020 by Howard Skolnik

Filed under: DOT/UN, HazMat, Industry News, Safety, Skolnik Newsletter

PHMSA offers Hazmat transportation training workshops and webinars throughout the year. These free training opportunities are for anyone who offers or transports hazardous materials in commerce, or has a desire to learn more about DOT’s Hazardous Materials Regulations (HMR).

PHMSA conducts webinars specialized to meet the needs of industry or the public safety community. Transportation webinars provide a basic overview of the regulatory requirements – what they are, how they apply, and how to comply with them – for shipping and transporting Hazardous Materials.

To register for any of the webinars below, please use the following link:
https://opsweb.phmsa.dot.gov/hm_seminars/default_webinar.asp

The Many Uses of Stainless Steel Process Containers

November 16th, 2020 by Natalie Mueller

Filed under: Industry News

At Skolnik we manufacture industrial, stainless steel containers in a variety of configurations for a variety of industries and uses. The durability and sterility of stainless steel make it a particularly versatile material in sensitive environments such as pharmaceutical, food and beverage handling. These containers are stainless steel process containers.

Stainless steel process containers are favored in the pharmaceutical and food industries for their durability, anti-corrosion and ease to thoroughly sanitize. 

In the food industry, stainless steel and even seamless, crevice-free process containers are available to meet stringent hygiene requirements. Furthermore, Skolnik proudly offers kosher food grade process drums. Food grade process drums prevent contamination during food processing and storing.

In the pharmaceutical industry, the most popular stainless steel for process drums are grade 304, 306 and 306L. These drums have the highest resistance to chemical corrosion and oxidization. Type 316 is incredibly heat tolerant and therefore can withstand high-temperature sanitization practices. 

Beyond food and pharmaceuticals, stainless steel process drums are increasingly popular in the hemp and cannabis industries for the processing, storing and transporting of CBD and hemp oils. 

Like all of our drums, our process drums are strong, heavy and, in many cases, reusable due to their ability to be safely sanitized. And, for materials that react negatively with steel, a selection of steel drum linings can help ensure chemicals and consumables remain safely contained and uncontaminated while still offering the durability of a steel container.

Our seamless stainless steel process drums and drum linings are just a few of the solutions Skolnik provides to support the safety of our customers in the pharmaceutical, chemical and food-processing industries.

Could a Tool to Combat Coronavirus Also Protect Grapevines from an Annual Threat?

November 10th, 2020 by Jon Stein

Filed under: Skolnik Newsletter, Wine

Scientists and vintners are exploring using UV lights, now being employed in HVAC systems to reduce the threat of COVID-19, as a weapon against mildew on grapevines.

Writing in a recent Wine Spectator article, Lynn Alley, reports that Jim Bernau, founder of Willamette Valley Vineyards, was installing an ultraviolet light component to his HVAC system in the winery, to protect both staff and customers against COVID-19 when inspiration struck. “The light bulb went off when we started researching the UV light to kill COVID,” said Bernau. “It reminded me of the research I’d been reading about for years on using UV light to kill pathogens in the vineyard.” Alley goes on to write that: “Bernau, like most organic and sustainable growers, uses organic Sulphur to control powdery mildew in his Oregon vineyards. Many other vintners employ chemical fungicides. According to the Robert Mondavi Institute Center for Wine Economics at U.C. Davis, powdery mildew currently accounts for an estimated 74 percent of total pesticide applications by California grape growers. The fungicides are costly and environmentally unfriendly, plus the fungus typically adapts to the fungicides within a few generations, requiring heavier applications or changing formulas.”

An international consortium of scientists known as the Light and Plant Health Project, led by David Gadoury, a plant pathologist at Cornell AgriTech in Geneva, N.Y., has developed an inexpensive answer. Gadoury has spent his entire career looking for ways to keep plants healthy. Although scientists have known for several years that UV light will kill bacteria, viruses and fungi, just exactly how to apply their finds in a working field or vineyard has been a challenge. “Research in using UV light to kill the powdery mildew pathogens is not new,” Gadoury said. “But it has accelerated with the discovery that UV is much more effective when applied at night.” Gadoury and his team have found that mounting UV lights on tractors or sending self-driving robots into the vineyards at night can scramble the mildew’s DNA and kill it faster, safely, and more efficiently than costly fungicides. “What makes it possible for us to use UV to control these plant pathogens is that we apply it at night,” Gadoury said. “At night, the pathogens don’t receive blue light and the DNA repair mechanism isn’t working.”

The team has partnered with SAGA Robotics in Norway to develop the first commercial robot fitted with UV lights. The Norwegian robots are autonomous vehicles fitted with an array of lamps. “Our initial assessment is that an autonomous vehicle will make UV light application far less expensive than the current seven- to 10-day application of organic sulfur via tractor and sprayer with operator,” said Bernau. “There is another significant advantage. Our spray windows vary due to the Willamette Valley’s periodic rainy or windy weather conditions, frustrating the best timing for applying sulfur via tractor and sprayer. The application of UV light is not restricted by weather.”

Here at Skolnik Industries, you’ll see the light with our stainless steel wine barrels. Note that our stainless steel wine barrels are reusable, easy to clean, and recyclable at the end of their service life. Check out the full line of our Stainless Steel Wine Drums here.