27 August 2014 - ASSDA publishes new Food Code of Practice

Hygiene and the 'cleanability' of equipment used in the production of food are paramount. The widespread use of stainless steel equipment in the food industry goes some way towards ensuring these criteria are met - but the assurances provided by stainless steel are only as good as the fabrication quality of the equipment.

Following a presentation at ASSDA's annual conference in 2003 on the quality of food fabrications, particularly in the dairy industry, it became apparent that fabrication specifications, if they existed, were often inadequate and inconsistent.

As a result, ASSDA launched a co-operative venture, working closely with many fabricators involved in the food industry, to create the “ASSDA Food Specification: Fabrication and Installation of Stainless Steel Process Plant and Equipment in the Food and Beverage Industries”.

The title may be complex, but the intention is simple: used in conjunction with ASSDA's Accredited Fabricator scheme, it will standardise fabrication practices in Australia and improve efficiency and reliability by raising the standard of quality delivered.

ASSDA's Food Code of Practice is not intended to replace accepted national and international standards. Instead, it reflects their requirements in the design and fabrication process specifically for food and beverage plant. The specification is intended as a step forward from the more generic advice offered by the well-known “Blue Book”, published by ASSDA's sister organisation NZSSDA.

The Food Spec supplements the purchaser's specification and contract, with the purchaser's performance criteria and the supplier's design being the default conditions. There are prescriptive sections, such as those relating to spacing for access or acceptable levels of heat tint. However, best practice is flagged with the expectation that a contrary decision must be well supported. The consistent theme throughout is the delivery of cleanable surfaces in a hygienic environment.

The specification can be broken into four sections:

1. Scope, definitions, interpretation, document hierarchy and supplier systems required;

2. Design requirements with both general rules and specific items for process equipment, process piping and other piping;

3. Fabrication requirements for:

  • Overall necessities of grade, materials care, welding and finishing procedures;
  • Process vessel fabrication, whether by the supplier or others;
  • The handling, welding and finishing of process tubing at ambient or elevated pressures; and
  • The fabrication of non-product contact pipework at low or high pressures.

4. Practicalities such as transport, installation, commissioning and insurance.

The specification includes two appendices that list relevant standards and a discussion on the pros and cons of autogenous and filler metal use in welding of tubing.

There is no doubt that ASSDA's Food Code of Practice fills a void in the food industry. It is now up to operators in the industry to use it to improve practices in both their own businesses and the industry as a whole.

Download ASSDA Food Code of Practice
Learn more about achieving ASSDA Accreditation

Third edition (May 2015) now available for purchase from ASSDA.

'Code of Practice for the Fabrication of Stainless Steel Plant and Equipment', also known as the "Blue Book", is intended to assist industry achieve the quality, structural integrity and food safety requirements necessary for stainless steel plant and equipment.

The document is intended to form part of any tender or contract document for the fabrication of such items and provides guidance on the following code of practice topics:

  • Information and requirements to be agreed and documented
  • Materials
  • Quality Assurance
  • General design requirements
  • Specific design features for tanks, vessels and silos
  • Placement and type of welds
  • Contamination prevention
  • Cutting and forming
  • Welding
  • Finishing processes
  • Inspection
  • Transportation and installation
  • Insulation and cladding

The 58-page publication is prepared by the New Zealand Stainless Steel Development Association and is available for sale through ASSDA.

Cost: A$50.00 + postage and handling

Please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to order your copy.

ASSDA is excited to have released the eighth edition of its Australian Stainless Reference Manual.

Often referred to as the 'stainless steel bible', the Australian Stainless Reference Manual is an industry guide and comprehensive resource to stainless steel.

An indispensable guide to stainless steel, the Reference Manual opens with a useful introduction to the material, contains a wealth of technical information, guidance on relevant national and international standards, and extensive glossary of stainless steel terminology and a full listing of ASSDA members, ASSDA Accredited Fabricators and their services. Technical sections of the manual include valuable information on:

  • Properties and performance
  • Grade selection
  • Surface finishes
  • Design
  • Fabrication
  • Product specifications
  • Conversion tables

A well respected industry publication, the Reference Manual has assisted specifiers, fabricators and end users of stainless steel in Australia for over a decade. Currently being published every 5 years, the Reference Manual is an essential guide for anyone connected with the building, manufacturing and design industries.


2020 Reference Manual costs
Book or PDF - $85 members* / $160 non-members (+ postage and handling where required)
Book and PDF version - $100 members* / $175 non-members (+ postage and handling)

*Please note all ASSDA Members will receive a number of free copies depending on your level of membership.

To order your copy of the 2020 Australian Stainless Reference Manual, please complete the product order form and return to ASSDA.


ASSDA is excited to present the sixth edition (2021) of the Stainless Steel Stock Guide, a free resource aimed at disseminating an up-to-date breakdown of 'ex-stock' stainless steel materials on offer in Australia.

Download your FREE copy.

What is the ASSDA Stainless Steel Stock Guide and how does the 2021 edition differ?
It is an online-only publication which details the stocking (defined as stocked in Australia as regular item) portfolio of commonly-used stainless steel semi-finished and finished materials.

The 2021 edition has reviewed the Coil, Pipe and Tube, and Pipe and Tube Fittings sections with current AS 1528 stock.

Information has been provided to ASSDA by suppliers and is intended as a general indication of common availability only. Contents include:

  • Sheet, Coil and Plate
  • Safety Flooring Products
  • Bar
  • Wire and Wire Rope
  • Mesh
  • Pipe and Tube
  • Pipe and Tube Fittings
  • Fasteners

Australian suppliers have the capacity to tailor many products to individual specification, and special product runs can be arranged provided sufficient time is allowed.

If you are looking for a supplier, fabricator or other stainless steel service, the ASSDA Buyers' Guide is an excellent starting point. Available on the homepage of www.assda.asn.au, the ASSDA Buyers' Guide is a comprehensive industry directory and reference to the stainless steel industry in Australia, designed to promote our industry and member capabilities.


Who is it for? 
Anyone who needs or wants to know about stainless steel materials are readily available, and in what form and specification.

As a designer, specifier or engineer, use the Stainless Steel Stock Guide to better understand the relevant specification, sizes and product dimensions of readily available materials to aid project management and delivery.

As a fabricator or producer of stainless bearing goods, use it not only for your day-to-day procurement queries, but also to find ways to streamline operations, better manage inventories and optimise your own production processes.


Australian Stainless is ASSDA's flagship publication and is a leading industry magazine devoted to showcasing the unique diversity and durability of stainless steel.

First published in 1993, Australian Stainless is a high quality, full-colour magazine, featuring carefully selected photographs and well-constructed text with high production values that convey the quality of stainless steel, its elegance and beauty. A well-respected industry publication, Australian Stainless has assisted and encouraged specified and end users of stainless steel, with a focus on local fabrication.

In 2009, ASSDA launched Australian Stainless Online to provide a readily available news feed to a wider audience around the world. Visit www.assda.asn.au/blog/.

Australian Stainless is designed to stand as an informative reference tool and features:

  • Applications and case studies
  • Comprehensive technical articles
  • Innovative Australian fabrication
  • Circulation of over 5,000 readers

Click here to view the 2021/22 Media Kit for Australian Stainless.

Previous editions of Australian Stainless can be viewed below or you can look for articles relating to particular topics here using the global search function on our website.

AS 72 - 2021

  AS 73 - 2021

AS 70 - 2020

  AS 71 - 2021

AS 68 - 2020

  AS 69 - 2020

AS 66 - 2019

AS 67 - Australian Stainless Reference Manual 2020

AS 64 - Summer 2018/19

AS 65 - 2019

AS 62 - Winter 2018

  AS 63 - Spring 2018

AS 60 - Summer 2017/18

AS 61 - Autumn 2018

AS 58 - Summer 2016/17

  AS 59 - Winter 2017

AS 56 - Winter 2016

   AS 57 - Spring 2016

AS 54 - Spring 2014


AS 55 - Winter 2015


AS 52 - Summer 2012/13


AS 53 - Autumn 2013


AS 50 - Summer 2011/12


AS 51 - Autumn 2012

AS48 Cover AS 48 - Autumn 2011  

AS 49 - 2012 Australian Stainless Reference Manual

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AS 46 - Winter 2009

AS 47 - Spring 2010

AS 44 - Spring 2008

AS 45 - Summer 2009

AS 42 - Summer 2008

AS 43 - 2008 Australian Stainless Reference Manual

AS 40 - Winter 2007

AS 41 - Spring 2007

For articles featured in issues 39 or earlier, please refer to Australian Stainless Online (www.assda.asn.au/blog/) or contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with your request.