CIP is the process to ensure that process lines, tanks and other equipments are free of inorganic and organic contaminants. It is the circulation of cleaning fluid through the piping system and other equipment connected in a continuous circuit.
It is most applicable to those processes that are designed to handle fluid or semi fluid products, which will easily confine liquids, and which must be maintained in a very clean or perhaps sterile condition.
The process must be constructed of stainless steel or equally corrosion-resistant material.
The most effective and repeatable CIP operations are achieved by the application of considerable automation. Therefore, the highly automated process is generally more easily designed as a CIP-cleanable process as compared to processes that utilize manually operated pumps and valves, or considerable manually assembled product piping.