The Fight Against Rust and Germs

Cables and plug connections have to withstand a great deal, but this is especially true for the food and beverage industry, where the right choice of material is crucial.

When used in the Food and Beverage industry, products need to have resistance to biological influences such as microbes or fungi. In cheese factories, the bacteria that help the cheese ripen can corrode a conventional cable in a matter of months, leading to short circuits. Sheath materials made from special TPE, on the other hand, such as those used on LAPP’s ÖLFLEX® ROBUST cables, repel microbes and are easy to clean. The secret of the special thermoplastic elastomer that we use for this application is the smooth surface. This is achieved with a smart mixture of additives that fill microscopic gaps in the material that stay bonded in the plastic matrix even after heavy cleaning with a steam jet. The combination of strong substances with flexible polymer chains in between gives the mixture rubber-like properties while being as easy to process as thermoplastics. Some suppliers offer PUR cables for use in the Food and Beverage industry that offer extremely high mechanical strength. But PUR is hydrophilic, meaning that it attracts water. Special TPE, by contrast, is hydrophobic.  

Rust-Free Connections with Stainless Steel

SKINTOPS After Cleaning Agents

The cleaning agents commonly used in the Food and Beverage industry are particularly harsh on cable glands made from nickel-plated brass (left). However, they can’t get the better of the SKINTOP HYGIENIC made from stainless steel (right).

In the Food and Beverage industry, stainless steel is often essential. For example, LAPP offers the SKINTOP® INOX and the SKINTOP® HYGIENIC, While the SKINTOP® INOX tends to be used in the splash zone, the SKINTOP® HYGIENIC is also suitable for the product zone.

Stainless steel does not rust and there is no coating that could eventually flake off. But stainless steel isn’t always “just” stainless steel. Conventional V2A stainless steel is relatively low-cost, yet not as robust when it comes to chemical resistance. Stains can appear on the metal when it is immersed in substances containing chlorides. The Food and Beverage industry often uses hypochlorous acid that disintegrates into hydrochloric acid and kills organic substances. V2A stainless steel is not suitable here. V4A stainless steel offers a tougher alloy and is also used on expensive Swiss watches. It is extremely hard and withstands impacts and cleaning with coarse brushes.

Because stainless steel is harder than brass or standard steel, it is more difficult to process. This is especially true of V4A due to the alloy elements chromium, nickel, and molybdenum. If its surface is left untreated, V4A is rougher, leading to higher abrasion. Screws that have to withstand high forces across their thread would, therefore, be stuck. This is why LAPP gives our products made from V4A stainless steel, such as the EHEDG-certified SKINTOP® HYGIENIC, a special surface treatment that reduces abrasion and makes it easy to tighten and release the cable gland.

Stainless steel cannot be used everywhere. Take EPIC® rectangular connectors, for example. Stainless steel is unsuitable here because the metal is too hard to be processed. The connector would have to be milled from a complete block, which is expensive. That’s why we do things different with EPIC® ULTRA: the housing on this rectangular connector is made from corrosion-resistant, nickel-plated cast zinc.

Some companies use plastic housings that offer some resistance to acids and alkaline solutions. But plastic housings present the risk of low dimensional stability under mechanical or environmental influences. This can also lead to leaks, presenting a safety risk in the Food and Beverage industry. There is a risk of accidents and high follow-up costs for maintenance and service. Plastic is also unsuitable for applications in which electromagnetic compatibility is important. At the very least, they must be coated with metal to protect against interference. In practice, the results in terms of screening are often disappointing.


For questions on products for the Food and Beverage industry, please contact Lapp Tannehill at 800.633.6339 or complete our online form.

LAPP launches new brand identity at Hanover Trade Fair

One company, one name – worldwide


LAPP, the expert in connection technology, is developing its brand. By using the name LAPP – in capital letters and with no additions – the family company is underlining its international alignment and positioning as a leading supplier of connection solutions. In the future, national subsidiaries and departments will all operate under the name LAPP with no additions. The message is clear – one name and one logo for the entire company, offering its customers the same outstanding service at all times, wherever they are. The new brand identity will be on display for the first time at the Hanover Trade Fair. In future, the family name will represent the company’s fundamental values – focus on success, focus on customers, innovation and family.


The new branding is LAPP’s response to the fact that what was originally a cable manufacturer has developed into a provider of connection solutions. Name affixes such as “Kabel”, “Cable” or “Cablo”, which have been used in many countries since the company was founded in 1959, will disappear. In recent years, LAPP has successfully developed into a provider of integrated solutions and branded products for numerous industries and applications; as evidenced by the positive results for the past financial year which saw a 13.9 percent increase of global turnover. “Now is the right time to have a uniform name worldwide and a unified logo to link everything together,” explains Chairman Andreas Lapp. Customers and their needs were at the heart of the decision. “These days it is no longer so important in which country our customers buy our products and where they are delivered to – we’ve been working as an international team for a long time. It is a logical progression for our external identity to reflect that. And what’s more: that is exactly what our customers expect”, Andreas Lapp continues. 


LAPP Building

The change is a logical step in the company’s development but is also a joint decision by the Lapp family – LAPP is still LAPP. This was shown by the change of generations that occurred in 2017, when Matthias Lapp, a member of the third generation of the founding Lapp family, took over the role of CEO for Europe, Africa, the Middle East and South America.


Lapp Tannehill is an exception to the name branding and will retain the name, Lapp Tannehill, due to the special nature of our business model as a distributor of LAPP products, along with other well-known manufacturer and supplier solutions. We have wire and cable solutions for a wide range of industries, including equipment manufacturing, building and contractors, aerospace, military and defense, automotive, transportation, construction, medical, oil and gas, renewable energy, automation, lighting manufacturing, and security. We also provide additional value-added services to accommodate special requirements or specifications, including wire striping, dying, twisting, cut pieces, re-spooling to specific put-ups, and kitting.

Lapp Tannehill Hires Additional Inside Sales Reps

Lapp Tannehill New EmployeesOver the last few months, Lapp Tannehill has added two Inside Sales Reps to the sales team. We’re excited to welcome Nate Skinner and Ben Freemark to the team.

Nate is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Superior with a communication major. He has spent the past 12 years in transportation sales with C.H. Robinson.

Ben is a recent graduate of the University of Minnesota Duluth with a Business Administration degree in Marketing.

We are still growing the inside sales team, along with some outside sales positions in the Phoenix and San Francisco Bay areas. To learn more about these positions, visit our careers page.

Lapp Tannehill Purchasing Department Expands

Lapp Tannehill PurchasingLapp Tannehill is excited to announce that Joel Hopkins, Brian Arickx, and Ally Kraut have joined the purchasing department. Joel and Ally have joined us as buyers, and Brian is the supply chain manager.

Brian Arickx: Supply Chain Manager
Brian comes to us with a Master of Business Administration in Operations from the Carlson School of Management as well as a Bachelor of Science majoring in Industrial Engineering and a minor in Supply Chain. He has spent the last seven years with Target Corporation in various roles including Planning Analyst, Six Sigma project lead, Forecasting and most recently Project Manager for Supply Chain strategy. We are excited he joined our team and lead the purchasing department as well as the supply chain initiative.

Ally Kraut: Buyer
Ally is a recent graduate of Iowa State University with a Bachelor of Science degree; double majoring in Supply Chain Management and Accounting. 

Joel Hopkins: Buyer
Joel is also a recent graduate receiving his Business Administration degree in Operations and Supply Chain Management from the University of St. Thomas.

Lapp Tannehill Sales Team Grows

Lapp Tannehill SalesLapp Tannehill is excited to welcome Magdalena Grela and Victoria Koehler to the Lapp Tannehill sales team!

Magdalena comes to us with a Master of Business Administration from the University of Phoenix, IL as well as a Bachelor of Marketing and Management from National-Louis University, Poland. She has held progressive roles in sales with Helukabel USA and most recently as the Business Development Manager at Tele-Fonica Cable Americas. Magdalena is joining us as an outside sales rep in the Illinois area

As a Sales Management Professional, Victoria comes to us with 22+ years of sales account, sales management experience. For the past 6 years, she has worked for HUBER + SUHNER, Inc., a connectivity solutions provider, as their Distribution Sales Manager. Previously she held various positions at Avnet Electronics. Victoria is the regional general manager for the West Coast, working out of the Las Vegas facility.