MOSH/MOAH contamination

Minimising the risk of MOSH/MOAH contamination by lubricants

- Optimisation of Lubricant dosage

- Use of non-hydrocarbon based lubricants

- Innovative lubrication concept

==> to mitigate the risk from the very beginning


Food contamination by undesired substances such as MOSH MOAH is one of the biggest challenges for food manufactures. Klüber Lubrication presents a multi-facet approach to minimise the risk of contamination and to achieve better results in the production process.

Current requests, made by the EU for stronger controls and monitoring of mineral oil hydrocarbons in food and in materials and articles intended to come into contact with food, are currently causing a considerable amount of uncertainly among food manufacturers. Tribology expert Klüber Lubrication has long been addressing this issue and has developped numerous speciality lubricants in line with the highest standards in place, according to the recommendations of the European Food Safety Authority.


High-performance lubricants in the food industry

One way in which mineral oils can enter the food chain is the production process and the process aids used, including the lubricants selected for the production of food and food packaging. Lubricants for incidental food contact can be based on non-alkane oils, such as silicone oil or PFPE, or on  synthetic or non-synthetic hydrocarbons. All non-synthetic white oils Klüber Lubrication uses for NSF-H1 products are highly purified and thus virtually free of aromatic compounds.

One advantage of our innovative high-performance lubricants is the fact, that very small amounts are sufficient to achieve the desired lubrication effect. Our tribology specialists are always aiming at further reducing the amount of lubricants needed, ; because even with the highest hygienic standards, a contamination or cross-contamination with these substances during production, transport and  stock, due to leakages, vapours, evaporation loss or ventilation, cannot be ruled out. Furthermore, high-quality services such as our regular lubricant analyses can help to identify or eliminate the risk of contamination at an early stage.

Regulation and limit values

Klüber Lubrication's H1 lubricants are in compliance with 21 CFR § 178.3570 issued by the United States Food and Drug Administration. That means they are designed fo incidental, unintentional food contact. The amount used must be the minimum required to accomplish the desired technical effect and no non-H1 product should be used in and around the food-processing area. Correct use of  H1 lubricants normally means that no contact with food occurs at all. In case of unavoidable food contact, the amount of lubricant in food must not exceed 1 ppm for silicone oils and 10 ppm for all other base oils.

Due to the complexity of determining MOH content in food, there are currently  no standardised analyses and no legal limits for MOH in food in Europe. The German Federal Ministry of Food and  Agriculture (BMEL) is working on statutory limits for migration through packaging, and values of max. 2 mg MOSH/kg food and 0,5 mg MOAH/kg food are being discussed. The analytical methods for MOH determination are continuously improved, thus the detection limit is decreasing. Typically, such analyses are performed by online-coupled chromatography (HPLC-GC/FID). The detection limits strongly depend on the MOH distribution in the sample, and the type of sample used. For example, in samples with a high oil content, the detection is limited to approx. 5 mg MOH/kg food, whereas in dry samples, 0.1-0.5 mg/kg can be detected.

If in doubt, ask the expert

Klüber Lubrication's H1 lubricant portfolio yield MOSH/MOAH contaminations below the BMEL limits even in direct food contact, and 10 ppm of the lubricant in the food (which is the limit given by the FDA). Furthermore, Klüber Lubrication is playing an active role at the EHEDG (European Hygienic Engineering and Design Group), supporting its customers in reducing the risk of all kinds of food contamination, including lubricants in general, whether hydrocarbon-based or not, and wear parciles as well. Klüber Lubrication's global team of experts in the food industry has designed a comprehensive package of services to support customers in this matter from tribological analysis to risk assessment, from lubricants monitoring to training.

En savoir plus

Complétez ce formulaire