Access plant info & control equipment

Siemens’ Simatic Plant Intelli­gence connects its SCADA and manufacturing expertise systems from the machine to corporate management level, allowing users to access important plant information in real time as well as control production equipment.

Transparency in production and efficient acquisition, evalu­ation, distribution and archiving of production data are features of the system.

According to the company, the Simatic Plant Intelligence sys­tem runs on a Windows operat­ing system and enables parame­ters across several plants to be analysed.

https://mes-simaticit.siemens.com

till.moor@siemens.com

TraceTech presentations

Members of the food industry are invited to attend TraceTech, a two day conference and exhibition to inform and educate supply chain, transport and logistics managers about the benefits of improved traceability, held on October 23rd and 24th in Sydney.

Free keynote presentations during TraceTech by industry professionals will cover issues of traceability including why it is key to gaining a competitive advantage in the supply chain.

Presentation details:

presentation one

Topic: Why traceability is the key to unlocking value and gaining competitive advantage in your supply chain?

Presenter: Nicholas Tsougas, director, Insight Program (federal sector), Oracle Corporation.

When: Tuesday October 23, 10am.

Presenatation two

Topic: Track and trace in consumer electronics: improving traceability to deliver competitive advantage.

Presenter: Peter Djurichkovic, national logistics system manager, Canon Australia.

When: Tuesday October 23, 2pm.

Presentation three

Topic: Information flows across the supply chain.

Presenter: Brett Campbell, partner consulting, Deloitte Touche Tomatsu.

When: Wednesday October 24, 2pm.

Click here to register for TraceTech.

Continuous cooker

Gold Peg have made available the RotaTherm continuous cooker, which injects steam into the product as it passes up the cooking column, cook­ing ingredients in a single pass.

Low to high viscous products, low to high mois­ture foods and those containing high or low vol­umes of particulate can all be cooked in this way.

According to the company, the RotaTherm can produce both UHT and pasteurised prod­ucts, and achieves high levels of food safety through its precise high temperature short resistance time (HTST) cooking.

www.goldpeg.com

enquiries@goldpeg.com

Leak detection for food packaging

John Morris Scientific has released Adixen Sensistor’s Hydrogen Leak Detector H2000, an instrument for leak detection and tightness control that is able to identify leaks in hermetically sealed food packaging 1000 times smaller than those detectable with traditional soapy water, pressure decay or bubble tests.

Hydrogen leak detection is conducted with a food-safe gas mix constituting 5% hydrogen in 95% nitrogen, and can be transported to the leaks and dissipated at a faster rate than other gases, allowing for quicker testing and re-testing.

According to the company, the H2000 is based on modern microelectronics and involves no expensive vacuum pump technology in the detection process, resulting in low maintenance.

www.johnmorris.com.au

info@johnmorris.com.au

Water goes pink for charity

Ingredients: mineral water

Brand owner: Coca Cola Amatil

Brand/product manager: Joanne Pitsikas

Packaging supplier: Le Mac Australia Group (sleeve), Amcor Closures (closure), Oberland Glass (bottle)

Graphics package designer: Design Nucleus

Workshop: packaging & shelf life

A workshop on polymer packaging and shelf life in Melbourne on November 14th-15th 2007 will be lead by Dr Gordon Robertson, FAIP, in association with the Australian Institute of Packaging.

Decisions about which polymer to chose or what the effect on shelf life will be if a change is made in package dimensions or polymer type are often based on trial and error or intuition.

This course is an attempt to fill that gap with respect to plastics packaging by discussing the basic principles behind polymer selection, deteriorative reactions in foods and shelf life.

The workshop will provide attendees the opportunity to construct connections between food chemistry, packaging design and polymer science to expand their knowledge base and competence.

Participants will identify key packaging decision-making processes and will validate their new knowledge to reframe package challenges and make winning food packaging decisions.

Learning objectives

  • To understand the properties of the key plastics polymers available for food packaging;
  • To comprehend the major plastics processing methods;
  • To appreciate the key deteriorative reactions which determine end of shelf life;
  • To solve food packaging challenges in package design and plastics material selection;
  • To justify and appraise package design and plastics material selections as related to shelf life.

Details

Melbourne: 14th-15th November

Medina Executive Flinders Street

88 Flinders Street

Melbourne, VIC 3000

Dr. Gordon L. Robertson, FAIP, was Foundation Professor of Packaging Technology at Massey University where he taught food packaging courses for 21 years. He then spent 11 years with Tetra Pak in Asia. Now he is an adjunct Professor at the University of Queensland and a consultant in food packaging based in Brisbane, Australia. Dr Robertson is the author of the definitive textbook on food packaging, the 2nd edition of which was published last year by CRC Press.

For further details and a registration form please contact Dr Robertson directly.

Stress-busting wild green oat extract

Frutarom’s Neuravena has been proved in the results of two recent in-vivo studies to improve stress-coping abilities and cognitive function/activity, confirming the results of previous in vitro investigations and offering manufactures of mental health functional food products an innovative ingredient.

Neuravena (EFLA 955), Frutarom’s wild green oat extract, has been shown to enhance stress coping abilities as well as learning performance.

The phytonutrients present in the extract are believed to affect the activity of cerebral enzymes closely related to mental health and cognitive function.

Study 1: Changes in brain activity

Nonspecific effects on the brain can be investigated by measuring changes in brain activity.

In the first study the effect of orally administered Neuravena on the electrical brain activity of rats was examined.

Increasing individual doses of the oat extract were administered to the animals at 90-minute intervals.

Changes in the electrical activity of the brain were measured continuously over a period of five hours.

Results of the study showed that Neuravena has stimulating effects on brain activity, with the highest dose exerting the greatest effect.

The observed effects on electrical brain activity, the so-called electrical fingerprint, is indicative of the stimulating properties of Neuravena.

A subsequent database comparison of the electrical fingerprint of Neuravena with the activity profiles of various drugs affecting the central nervous system revealed that Neuravena stimulates brain activity in a similar way to pharmaceuticals used in the treatment of dementia.

Study 2: Behavioural studies on stress-coping abilities and learning performance

A second study investigated the effect of Neuravena on the central nervous system in a series of standardised behavioural trials.

A group of 12 rats was administered a dose of 1g/kg bodyweight with food over a period of seven weeks, while another group was given ten times this dose and a control group received a normal diet.

The results indicated enhanced stress-coping abilities and alertness, as well as an improvement in general learning performance and speed of learning.

Moreover, a positive effect on social behaviour was observed. A subsequent pathological examination also confirmed that ingestion of Neuravena is safe and well tolerated in subchronic treatment.

Neuravena promotes stress coping abilities and exerts a positive effect on cognitive performance, most probably mainly on concentration and learning ability.

In view of the growing market for mental health products, considerable potential will unfold for the extract.

Like other extracts of the EFLA line, Frutarom manufactures the extract exclusively from an oat variety cultivated especially for Frutarom by contract growing. This variety is characterised by a particularly high bioactivity and was selected by bioassay screening.

Great Australian Red award announced

Wolf Blass Black Label 2004 has won the 2007 Great Australian Red award, an annual wine competition that celebrates blends that define Australia, namely Cabernet Sauvignon and Shiraz.

It is significant that the winner of the Great Australian Red is not a single vineyard blend, but a blend across multiple vineyards and regions.

According to one of the Award’s creators, wine writer Tyson Stelzer, there is a focus on single vineyards and small producers at present, and yet the capacity of companies like Wolf Blass to blend across many regions is a strength of Australian winemaking.

The judges commented that Wolf Blass Black Label 2004 demonstrated the strength of its vineyard sources across South Australia.

Protecting food innovation

Australia’s leading branded food manufac­turers and marketers are to be congratulat­ed on their achievements in a very competi­tive market.

However, even the most successful companies will be aware of the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.

Not least of these arise from the private label business: its growing sophistication, the increas­ing number of private label products, and com­petition for space on the retailers’ shelves.

The threat to brand owners is that private label operators will quickly assimilate inno­vations, focusing the market on price alone as a differentiator and discouraging invest­ment in all but superficial innovation.

The value of brands is tied up in intellec­tual assets: brand names, logos, pack design, manufacturing technology and know-how, product design and formulations.

It is likely that the most successful mar­keters of the future will be those most adept at protecting and leveraging these assets.

In particular, with the present trend toward out-sourcing and contracting research and development and product development services, it is inevitable that greater use of formal intellectual asset protection strate­gies will be key to effective intellectual asset management and commercial advantage.

For Australia in particular, it is likely that the recently introduced Innovation Patent system will be increasingly used to protect the incremental, but important, product and packaging developments that might not have been protectable under patents in the past.

In addition, the recent overhaul of the Reg­istered Design system is likely to make it more useful than it may have been in the past for effectively protecting product and packaging design innovations.

Taco patent

The Old El Paso Stand’N’Stuff taco shell is a great example of how a useful, marketable product development can be protected by the innovation patent in Australia.

General Mills Marketing Inc. owns a certi­fied (enforceable) innovation patent (no. 2006100568) entitled ‘Square Bottom Taco Shell’.

This patent allows them to stop any com­petitor making or marketing any free-stand­ing taco shell which has the key elements of a flat base attached to upright sides — regard­less of any other feature or the appearance of the competitor’s taco shell.

This is not a high-tech develop­ment, but it is a useful and mar­ketable point of difference which can be protected.

Contact Adam Hyland, Watermark, for more information.

Food safety seminar

The New Zealand and Australian institutes of food science and technology (NZIFST and AIFST) encourage members of the food industry to attend a seminar on October 15th in New Zealand which will focus on fulfilling Food Control Plan requirements and expanding knowledge of food safety practices.

Those involved in manufacturing for food service, chilled ready-to-eat meals and food safety auditing, consulting or verifying will benefit from the seminar which will open with a presentation on Food Control Plans by Mike Orchard, program manager (food service) at NZFSA.

Industry perspectives on food safety will be discussed by Gary Kennedy from Correct Food Systems (Australia) and Mary Whelan, an AIFST food services advisor, who will speak about her recent fact finding trip in Europe.

Microbiology and hands-on food safety programs will be discussed by researchers and those in industry.

Event details:

Date: Monday 15th October

Time: 8.30am – 4.30pm

Venue: Waipuna Hotel, 58 Waipuna Rd, Auckland

Cost: $150

Click here for the full programme, further information and registration form.

Changes to food code

Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) is considering a number of changes to the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code, regulations that govern the sale of food sold in Australia and New Zealand.

Proposed changes include the approval of a food additive for wine, amendments to levels of chemical residues present in food, the addition of lutein to infant formula, a new genetically modified rice variety, and amended maximum residue limits for chemical residues in food.

FSANZ operates one of the most transparent standard-setting processes in the world, with industry, public health professionals, government agencies and consumers encouraged to access and comment on all scientific evaluations and reasons for making regulatory decisions.

Details and assessments of the proposed changes listed above can be found on the FSANZ website.

Submissions close on November 14th, 2007.

Filtration solution

Donaldson has produced a filtration solution that uses Ultra-Web technology to capture submicron particles for a variety of industries, including food processing and warehousing.

The filters can be incorporated into any of the company’s range of dust, fume and mist collectors or retrofitted into all brands of cartridge collectors.

According to the company, the nanofibres used in the filters capture particles that can then be cleaned off easily, keeping the substrate clean, and the Ultra-Web filter is the only standard cartridge filter media rated to capture microscopic dust particles.

Email Donaldson for more information.

Advances in refrigeration technology

In the liquid food industry the demand for better quality at acceptable cost is forcing the processing industry towards new innovations.

Low temperature processing is one such innovative process.

Refrigeration technology has opened the gate for developing freeze concentration (FC) technology.

By using the latest refrigeration developments new concepts are being created that make freeze concentration more competitive with traditional concentration methods.

Food liquids consist of water and dissolved solids.

In most cases the water content is 90% or more.

Part of this water can be removed by concentration.

The advantage of using freeze concentration is that the original characteristics of the product are maintained as:

  • low temperature processing prevents heat damage
  • efficient separation of the water in the form of pure ice crystals prevents loss of aroma or dry matter.

The concentrated product has the same basic quality as the original.

Therefore, the success of freeze concentration is based on quality preservation.

Separation

Freeze concentration consists of two parts: crystallisation and separation.

During crystallisation, part of the water is converted into spherical and pure ice crystals without any inclusions.

Traditionally, a separate nucleation and growth principle is used to create these spherical ice crystals.

One of the new developments is to use slurry crystallisation in which the production of ice crystals and their growth is no longer separated.

The separation of the ice crystals is done in a piston type wash column.

In this wash column (Fig 1) the concentrated liquid is separated from the ice crystals by mechanical force (filtration) while the ice crystals are counter currently back-washed.

The pure separated ice is melted practically without any losses.

The positive effect of slurry crystallisation is in the design of the equipment and the manufacturing cost can be considerably lower.

In particular, the design of the scraped heat exchanger and mixing vessel can be simplified.

In combination with modifications in the ice separator cost compared with the rational design are significantly lower.

Additionally, the specific energy consumption is also less which results in lower overall production costs.

Niro’s newly developed IceCon process of slurry crystallisation reduces capital cost of the process by up to 40%.

Slurry crystallisation

In the Niro freeze concentration system slurry crystallisation combines an external heat exchanger with a mixing vessel to provide for necessary residence time for crystal growth.

The recirculation flow controls the sub-cooling and keeps the crystals suspended.

During the recirculation cycle the sub-cooling is transferred into ice crystals.

The level of sub-cooling will continuously decrease until its lowest value is reached shortly before re-entering the heat exchanger.

A cyclic pattern of sub-cooling will result.

Another important design aspect is the slurry density.

With proper ice concentrations and providing that proper mixing is assured there always will be sufficient crystals at all places within the mixing vessel to prevent primary nucleation.

The heat exchanger is designed with a scraped surface.

Fig 2 shows grown ice crystals that were formed in a concentrated sugar solution.

The freeze concentration process can be used for virtually every liquid with a low to medium viscosity.

The main advantage of preventing quality loss makes the process ideal for high quality, heat sensitive food products such as coffee extract, fruit juices, wine, beer, vinegar, dairy products and nutraceuticals.

The advantages of freeze concentration to the food industry are attributed directly to the distinct improvement in quality over existing products, while slurry crystallisation provides a significant overall cost reduction that will challenge quality oriented liquid food markets.

Food labelling: breaching the Food Act

The NSW Food Authority has signalled it means business with the recent prosecution of two breaches of the NSW Food Act, which led to a total fine of $30,000 plus $80,000 in costs, in a timely reminder for food and beverage manufacturers.

Three sample bottles of Old McTavish Scotch Whisky in the warehouse of a liquor wholesale business were tested by the NSW Food Authority and found to contain 38.6% ethanol.

If something is labelled as Scotch whisky in Australia, under the Food Standards Code it must comply with Scottish standards, which require a minimum 40% ethanol content.

Because the samples failed to meet Scottish standards, the NSW Food Authority prosecuted the liquor wholesaler for two breaches of the Food Act:

  • Section 18(3), which bans a person in the course of carrying on a food business from selling food that is pack­aged or labelled in a way that falsely describes the food (‘food’ in this case includes spirits); and
  • Section 21, which requires compliance with any relevant part of the Code (among other things, the Code says that Scotch whisky must comply with Scottish standards).

Guilty plea and fine

The liquor wholesaler pleaded guilty in the Supreme Court of New South Wales.

The choice of court in this prosecution was extremely significant.

Usually these cases come before the Local Court, which can only impose a maximum $10,000 penalty.

The Supreme Court, unlike the Local Court, can impose a fine up to $275,000 for each of these breaches.

In setting the penalty the Supreme Court discounted the fine by 15% in recognition that the wholesaler had pleaded guilty.

The Court also acknowledged that this was the wholesaler’s first offence and that it had taken steps to improve its equipment for measuring ethanol content.

The liquor wholesaler was fined $15,000 for each offence; $30,000 in total penalties.

However, this was not the only cost imposed — the liquor wholesaler also had to pay the prosecutor’s costs of $80,000.

If you factor in the wholesaler’s own legal costs, these two breaches were expensive.

Lessons to learn

This decision is a wake-up call to review com­pliance with food labelling laws.

The Court made two things very clear in this case: consumers are entitled to have food accurately labelled; and the obligation to comply with the relevant provisions of the Food Act must be treated seriously, as must all breaches of the Act.

By bringing this action in the Supreme Court, the NSW Food Authority has also made it clear that it is ready to seek higher penalties than those available in the Local Court, and give the penalty provisions some teeth.

Although the fines were nowhere near the maximum allowable for each breach, they are significantly more than those available in the Local Court — and even more signifi­cant given the prosecutor’s costs of $80,000.

AIP focusses on MAP

The Australian Institute of Packaging’s September meeting, held recently in Melbourne, focussed on Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP).

Brian Day, food tech client services manager at Food Science Australia and an acknowledged global expert in MAP technology led the discussion.

MAP is used to inhibit microorganism growth, inhibit oxidation and extend shelf life in a wide range of food products.

The growth of single individual lifestyles and time-poor consumers has been a driver in the need for fresh food that comes in a package.

Chilled products such as meat and some ready-to-serve meals are packaged using MAP techniques but the technology is also a major participant in the supply chain.

Fresh fruit and vegetables are despatched in shipping containers that have liners made of MAP material and refrigerated pantechnicons and export containers have MAP technology added to the refrigeration systems.

Day emphasised that the success of MAP is dependant on good cold-chain husbandry as once the package is opened, or even leaking slightly, all benefits are lost.

MAP, utilising a blend of carbon dioxide and nitrogen, can inhibit mould growth and the correct gas mixture maintains the red colour in meat, but inhibits microorganisms that cause spoilage.

MAP is often used in conjunction with oxygen scavenging and moisture absorbing technologies.

The critical message from Day was to seek advice from the gas suppliers and the packaging companies that specialise in MAP before utilising this packaging format.

Two experts in material supply and technology followed Day’s presentation and supported his opening comments: Gareth Reynolds, sales manager — Australia & New Zealand for Cryovac Food Solutions, and Tony Whelan, regional sales manager ULMA [Packaging] Australia.

Australian food tempts American palates

Australian restaurateur Luke Mangan opened his first US restaurant, South Food and Wine Bar, on October 1, showcasing Australian cuisine and wine to an international market.

Austrade’s San Francisco-based Consul-General and Trade Commissioner, David Lawson, has commended award winning Australian chef-turned-restaurateur, Luke Mangan and his partners, West Australian Liz O’Connell and New Zealander Anna Weinberg, on their new venture.

“San Francisco, a city of sophisticated food and wine connoisseurs, second only to New York, will be delighted by [Mangan’s] Australian culinary creations and boutique wine list, which represents the backgrounds of the partners, at South Food and Wine Bar,” Lawson said.

South’s menu is a showcase of Australian food referred to as ‘ModOZ’ which marries fresh, bold flavours with southern hemisphere food such as barbecued prawns and mango salsa, lamb chops and mint pesto, Barramundi and Tasmanian trout matched with antipodean wines.

This venture will be a great opportunity to highlight Australian food ingredients in this discerning market and complements much of the work Austrade does in building recognition and awareness of Australian food and wine.

Mangan said the decision to enter the US market was made easier with the help of his partners West Australian Liz O’Connell, a former executive with Australian wine company Southcorp and New Zealander Anna Weinberg, who owned acclaimed New York restaurant Stella.

“It will be the first restaurant in San Francisco to have a rotating list of exclusive wines from Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, and one of the only southern hemisphere-dedicated lists in the US,” Mangan said.

“The minute you open a restaurant, from day one; wherever it is, it’s risky.

“But overall, I believe that Australia has something different to offer. We have great wine, food and growing interest in the US and internationally,” Mr Mangan said.

Export opportunities

According to Austrade, Mangan’s decision to enter the US market was clever, as the US is Australia’s second largest food export market.

US restaurant industry sales are expected to reach a record US$537 billion (A$620 billion) in 2007 — an increase of 5% in sales from last year.

Many Australian small-to-medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are doing well in the US market.

There are over 9000 Australian businesses now exporting to the US in goods alone and the food industry is playing a big role in this growth.

Food exports to the US are worth nearly $2.9 billion, with Australia’s strong brand image for healthy food and good quality wine going down well with American consumers.

Whizard meat trimmer

Food Processing Equipment offers the Bettcher Industries Whizard Series II Trimmers that are particularly suited to beef trimming operations and the meat processing industry in general.

An enhanced gear mesh design makes blade operation smoother and the colour-coded contoured handle reduces grip force and torque momentum, minimising operator fatigue and hand strain.

According to the company, the trimmers are comfortable and increase worker productivity and safety, while benefiting the bottom line.

Email Food Processing Equipment for more information.

Tasmanian lamb on world stage

Aurora lamb, the new 60 day grain-fed lamb produced in Tasmania by Aurora Gourmet Produce using strict stress management techniques, is experiencing strong export growth in Asia and Russia, with growing demand to feature it on menus in leading restaurants in China and Singapore.

Since the company established its Shanghai-based office in 2006, its export sales have boomed, with offshore markets now accounting for 80% of all customers.

China, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Russia, Canada and the United Arab Emirates all now buy Aurora Lamb.

The introduction of the lamb, which is grazed for up to 60 days on a high protein diet of fourteen natural grains, drinking only the purest Tasmanian water, follows its launch earlier this year to Australian chefs, who are now serving it in local restaurants such as Restaurant Balzac, Otto and Assiette in Sydney, Isis in Brisbane, the RACV Club in Melbourne, Morilla Estate in Hobart and the Adelaide Convention Centre.

According to Aurora Gourmet Produce, the explosion in export sales is a reflection of the product being increasingly regarded as one of the best in the world.

Asian restaurants currently serving Aurora lamb include:

China

  • M on the Bund
  • Laris

Singapore

  • Raffles Grill
  • Iggy’s at the Regent
  • The Cliff Restaurant at Sentosa (a Beauford Hotel)
  • Au Jardin

Thailand

  • Cy’an Restaurant, Metropolitan Hotel
  • Sukhothai (a Beaufort Hotel)

Hong Kong

  • M at the Fringe
  • Grissini at Grand Hyatt

Vietnam

  • Park Hyatt

Ensuring cold chain safety and efficiency

A major development in Australia’s cold chain within the last five years has been the ability to remotely monitor the temperature of storage facilities and vehicles while in motion, ensuring food items are transported and stored correctly at all times.

According to the Refrigerated Warehouse and Transport Association of Australia, the accurate monitoring of products, product traceability, correct handling and on-time delivery and pick-up, are the main areas covered in the Cold Chain Code of Conduct that ensures perishable food items move along the supply chain safely and efficiently.

The ability to monitor temperature throughout the transport cycle is particularly important when it comes to traceability and accountability in the supply chain and knowing, or being able to prove, that a specific food item has been transported and stored at a certain temperature.

Monitoring equipment

According to Global Cold Chain Solutions, a cold chain service provider, challenges faced by the cold chain and food industry include the use of older temperature monitoring equipment and equipment not being calibrated or read correctly, presenting a higher risk of foods being stored at incorrect temperatures.

“From a basic thermometer to a sophisticated wireless monitoring system, food manufacturers and suppliers must ensure that equipment used can be calibrated to ensure it is always measuring accurately,” Global Cold Chain Solutions director Laura Wills said.

“It must also be ensured that a refrigeration unit bears the correct rating for the Australian climate, such as sub-tropical or tropical ratings, as some European brands and new, low-cost refrigeration units imported from Asia are unsuitable for Australian conditions.”

Global Cold Chain Solutions’ flash link wireless temperature monitoring system provides continuous monitoring and complete management reporting capabilities for temperature and humidity.

It meets HACCP, quality assurance standards and other regulatory guidelines for the maintenance of environmental monitoring records, offers non-restrictive sensor placements for areas including freezers and refrigerators, and requires no human intervention, resulting in significant labour savings and reductions in human errors.

Storage and transport solutions

Global Cold Chain Solutions also offers the food industry a range of temperature-control transport solutions, including wireless in-transit temperature monitoring and thermal insulated cold chain boxes for shipping small food samples or bulk shipments for domestic and international use.

The disposable cold chain boxes are made from high-density polyurethane, an effective thermal insulation material.

Combined with gel bricks that freeze at specific temperature points, the shipments do not require dry ice, which is classed as a hazardous item and attracts a handling charge when used.

Due to polyurethane’s light weight and the thickness of the insulation panels, fewer gel bricks are required than in polystyrene boxes, which are typically loaded with an excess quantity of gel packs.

“This means less weight, reduced distribution costs, and gives the box the ability to perform in challenging situations, such as extreme heat, for long periods of time,” Wills said.

Global Cold Chain Solutions also supplies reusable refrigerated boxes that, utilising Kodiak Thermal technologies, are able to protect perishable items without the use of dry ice or power.

Containing a phase-change refrigerant and patented temperature-regulating thermal switch, the Kodiak lid is frozen in a standard commercial freezer, and a green light indicates when the lid is fully frozen.

At this point the container is packed and the lid closed.

Being a temperature-regulating technology, the Kodiak will respond to any external temperature variances, maintaining internal temperatures for the duration of the shipment.

When the internal temperature rises above the mid-point of the specified temperature spectrum, the thermal switch connects the frozen refrigerant to the patented thermal shield surrounding the payload and cools the interior.

When the internal temperature falls below the mid-point of the specified temperature spectrum, the system isolates the payload from the refrigerant and the cooling stops, ensuring ultimate temperature control.

“The refrigerated boxes do more than just store frozen material, they regulate the temperature within the cold boxes and the vacuum insulation panels protect temperature-sensitive foodstuffs,” Wills said.

Traceability

As part of the suite of information technology they provide to clients, Swire Cold Storage, a cold-chain logistics service provider, operates the Translogix Sapphire Transport Management System and Swire Warehouse Inventory Management System across all its fleets and warehouses, providing customer-specific transport and warehouse services including electronic data interface, timely and accurate information, and instant trace and track capabilities.

“Traceability throughout the supply chain is increasingly important, particularly in a situation where there is a product recall and stock needs to be located and identified promptly,” Swire Cold Storage business development manager Stephen Lanham said.

Tailored cold storage facilities

Swire Cold Storage also provides clients with tailor-made solutions, collaborating with customers in storage facility design to ensure optimum efficiency.

The company’s facility located at Cannon Hill, in New South Wales, is linked via 230m of overhead refrigerated tunnel to an adjacent abattoir operated by Australian Country Choice, the main meat supplier to Coles supermarkets.

“We have created a unique paddock-to-plate solution where cattle is slaughtered at one end and a series of automated and highly safe processes are then employed to chill, freeze, sort and store products that are destined for local and export markets,” Lanham said.

While the cold chain may not be heavily regulated in Australia, standards including HACCP and the Food Standards Code, as well as quality assurance measures implemented by food companies themselves, set a mandate for food-safe practices in the industry and must be followed.

With transportation and storage of food items being an integral part of the supply chain, food companies must ensure that a high standard of refrigeration and monitoring equipment is met by the service provider.

Celebrating healthy heart baking solutions

As the baking industry faces the challenge of delivering heart-healthy versions of consumers’ favourite products, the United Soybean Board (USB) congratulates both the baking industry on their efforts to incorporate heart healthy ingredients, and the American Heart Association (AHA) for their research and educational outreach, equipping consumers with the knowledge they need to make heart-healthy food choices.

On October 9th, the USB and its partners, Archer Daniels Midland Company (ADM) and ACH Food Companies will host a benefit dinner event during the International Baking Industry Exposition (IBIE) in Orlando, Florida.

Money raised will aid the AHA’s continued research and educational efforts, helping the organisation communicate important messages about heart-healthy ingredients, including solutions to the trans fats challenge.

The event, co-sponsored by ADM and ACH Foods, will highlight the importance of choosing heart-healthy ingredients in baked good applications.

Speakers will discuss heart-healthy ingredients for the baking industry and offer trans fat solutions.

The dinner menu will feature foods free of trans fats and prepared with trait-enhanced soybean oil varieties.

IBIE

The IBIE expo is one of the most well-attended and respected baking industry events in the US, attracting more than 20,000 baking professionals from around the world every three years.

It provides an opportunity to reach influential representatives from the baking industry who are faced with the particularly challenging task of removing trans fats from baked goods without sacrificing taste or functionality.