Sustainable food manufacturing right now

Technologies have been developed with the aim of improving air quality and water conservation, reducing energy use, and providing food industry companies with practical and efficient solutions.

According to Heat and Control, extensive research and development, along with close consultation with manufacturers, has resulted in techniques that can be measured and proven as a definite means of improving manufacturing efficiency, ultimately improving sustainability.

These upgrades are available to existing operations as a retro-fit, as well as for new commissions. “Heat and Control can offer realistic options as to how a manufacturer can introduce more sustainable practices, meaning processors can benefit now, not when they need to build a new line,” said Heat and Control’s chief engineer, Mick Walsh.

Technologies and equipment available take a whole-of-system approach across all areas of food production and include heat exchangers, heat recovery systems, air quality equipment, fresh water reducing systems and total line efficiency. When high-temperature air is introduced into a burner, less fuel is required for combustion.

“The Combustion Air Pre-Heater utilises normally wasted exhaust heat to reduce the energy usage and increase the fuel efficiency of our heat exchangers,” explained Walsh. Additional modules can be added to further increase the overall process efficiency by preheating make-up cooking oil, air and water.

Combustion Air Pre-Heaters can be retrofitted to many existing Heat and Control heat exchangers to boost energy efficiency. In addition, the graduated density oil heating tube bundle provides greater thermal efficiency than existing models – far exceeding the performance of heat exchangers that do not remove pollutants.

The Gentle Wash Potato Slice Washer reduces fresh water usage up to 80% over conventional systems. “The system thoroughly removes starch from potato slices with a unique three stage process that also cleans and reuses wash water. It then spreads slices uniformly across the drain conveyor for more efficient dewatering and feed into the fryer,” said Walsh.

“By using less fresh water and concent rating starch and fines for more efficient removal, Gentle Wash reduces sewer loading and the burden on a starch recovery system.”

As the high-efficiency KleenHeat heat exchanger heats the cooking oil, it also incinerates and removes virtually all odours, oil and other particulates exhausted from the fryer stack that would normally pollute the air around the manufacturing facility.

“Regulatory agencies worldwide recognise the KleenHeat pollution control method as the ‘Best Available Control Technology’ and increasingly require this equipment for new and upgraded fryer lines,” concluded Walsh.

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