Aug 18, 2016
Photo courtesy of Shecco Media
One of Florida’s oldest third-party logistics companies is introducing one of refrigeration’s newest innovations into its new cold storage facility: low-charge packaged refrigeration systems. With a focus on moving to eco-friendly refrigerants, McDonald’s franchisee Caspers Cold Storage and Distribution will be cooling its new warehouse with an ammonia/ CO2 and low-charge ammonia DX system. Because Stellar will be designing and building the new systems, Accelerate America editor Andrew Williams interviewed Stellar’s Brandon France to learn more about the project. Check out the feature article, “I’ll have CO2 and ammonia with that” in this week’s blog post to learn more about how the company is using low-charge refrigeration systems to lower costs, reduce installation time and utilize green refrigerants.
Best practices for a well-rounded strategic plan
Jun 16, 2016
If your roadmap is wrong, you’ll get lost. Ensuring your company’s roadmap—or strategic plan—embodies best practices is essential for your business’ future. With a three-to-five-year plan, there are several moving parts you must consider. Here, we review crucial elements your strategic plan must include, providing a downloadable checklist for you to use for your own plan.
Understanding crucial elements to forming a thorough strategic plan
Jun 2, 2016
What’s the best way to remain competitive in the food processing industry today? A strategic plan. It equips your business with the knowledge, tools and strategies necessary to evolve and adapt to changing marketing conditions and consumer demands. In fact, we’ll be hosting a Food Engineering webinar June 23, 3 Key Elements in a Successful Strategic Plan for Growth to dive into strategic plans even further. Last week, we discussed the first step in developing a strategic plan: developing a business plan. This week, we’ll discuss step two: conducting a manufacturing analysis.
May 19, 2016
Quick chill systems are a viable option for hog chilling thanks to improved efficiency, product quality and yield. But to achieve these benefits, and peak performance, your system must be designed correctly.
How quick chilling works, improves pork product output
May 12, 2016
There are more than 68,000 pork producers in the United States alone—competition is fierce. So how can your hog facility remain competitive? By producing the highest quality product possible for consumers, efficiently. And an effective chilling system is key to facilitating the most premium product for your consumers: a flavorful cut of meat with appealing color, firmness and moisture levels. The faster a carcass is cooled after slaughter, the better quality the meat will be. Quick chill systems, specifically, reduce chill time and produce a better cut of meat. While they may be a significant upfront investment for your food plant, this method offers significant advantages and long-term ROI.
An in-depth look at how to safely produce gluten-free products
Apr 14, 2016
Stellar recently exhibited at the American Society of Baking’s (ASB) annual BakingTech conference in Chicago. “Gluten-free” continues to be a topic on the rise among the attendees. This isn’t surprising, as more and more companies are incorporating gluten-free products into their offering arsenals. However, a common challenge for food manufacturers going gluten-free is preventing cross-contamination, whether it’s modifying existing plants or embarking on greenfield projects. Gluten-free products also require specific distribution and processing considerations that may differ from what manufacturers are used to, from mixing methods to storage. So, how do you safely integrate gluten-free manufacturing into your bakery plant?
Part 2: Process freezing series
Feb 18, 2016
Many food plants rely on freezers and refrigerators to store and ship their products. In last week’s post, I outlined four variables food processors must understand during process freezing. This week, I want to take a look at freezing methods and equipment, and the applications they’re best suited for. Depending on the type and quantity of food, certain freezers are more useful than others.
Part 1: Process freezing series
Feb 11, 2016
Food plant owners who work with frozen products must have a thorough understanding of the freezing process and what it does to food. Freezing, done well, preserves nutrients and provides a good-as-fresh product for the customer. Done badly — well, we’ve all pulled a forgotten, frost-encrusted steak out of the bottom of the freezer before. It’s not very appetizing. This two-part blog series will take a look at best practices for freezing and the applications of various types of freezers.
Feb 4, 2016
CO2/NH3 cascade systems offer food processors a practical way to increase efficiency. By using two centralized refrigeration systems working in unison to provide cooling temperatures, they maximize the effect of carbon dioxide and ammonia. The high-temperature system pulls heat away from the low-temperature system, which in turn uses recirculated liquid to cool the evaporators.
Cascade systems that use CO2 as a secondary refrigerant offer unique advantages. Carbon dioxide is nontoxic and nonflammable, and is also less likely to damage food products in the event of a release. For food plant owners, CO2/NH3 cascade systems offer six key benefits, which are detailed below.
Packaged refrigeration equipment series
Jan 28, 2016
For the past two weeks, we’ve discussed packaged refrigeration equipment: a system that uses ammonia or CO2 and a secondary refrigerant, allowing facilities to reap the benefits of ammonia while also minimizing the charge and risk. We’ve already reviewed the various ways these systems can benefit food processors and discussed the five different types of these low-charge chillers available. However, if you decide to introduce packaged refrigeration equipment into your food manufacturing plant, there are some key questions you must answer before installation to ensure an efficient, smooth installation process.