It’s essential to clean your press bags for smooth juice production, not just for health and safety (so please, clean your press bags after every juicing session).
Beyond just being clean and healthy, the fibers from plants can literally plug up the open spaces in the bag’s fabric. Plugged up holes cause extra pressure inside the bag during pressing. This pressure is caused by juice trying to get out with nowhere to go. You definitely don’t want this. Clogged bags can lead to waste or worse– it can cause your bag to burst at the seams!
Below we share our most thorough method of cleaning, one we feel is particularly effective for keeping the “flow” open in the bags. Another tried and true method is to hand wash and hang dry your bags.
Whatever method works for you is the best method, and in the end, all anyone really wants is clean bags ready for juicing.
Step One – Get Your Bags Ready
Take your bags off your machine, emptying any remaining cake inside. Flip the bags inside out, brushing off as much used shredded produce as you can. Start with the bags just off the machine instead of rinsing right away, as you can remove a lot of extra used produce this way and prevent plugging up your sink drain. Then rinse off the larger particles under running water (get those chunks off!).
Step Two – Soak Those Bags
Once your bags are good and “de-chunked”, we recommend soaking them in an alkaline solution. We use and suggest Five Star PBW Solution for cleaning all your juicing equipment (including your press bags). It’s a concentrate so follow instructions on mixing with water (Need some PBW? Contact our firstname.lastname@example.org to get yours ordered).
Step Three – A Little Deeper Clean
We recommend brushing the bags with a nylon brush to remove more particles in the stitching and crevices and rinse again under running water. Scrub scrub and clean your press bags. Once scrubbed well, wash in a regular washing machine with fragrance free, dye free detergent or even better, some PBW again!
Step Four – Dry Those Puppies Out
After you’ve taken your bags through a good cleaning cycle, tumble dry in a regular dryer. Believe it or not, this actually helps dehydrate and loosen some more of the fibrous plant particles and makes it easier to knock them out. We recommend dry brushing them after they’ve tumbled in the dryer. Dry brushing removes any lingering fibrous particles that can plug up any open spaces in your bag fabric.
Step Five – Sanitize for Best Results
Yeah, it’s not really part of the cleaning process but it is worth mentioning. Always sanitize your cleaned bags before use with the same solution as you do with your machine and all parts that touch food. Follow directions on your sanitizing solution and get familiar with your local health and safety standards and follow them! (Learn more about our recommended sanitizing process here)
We use Five Star Star San if you’ve been looking for a great sanitizer recommendation (contact email@example.com to purchase some for yourself!).