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FTNON continues fresh-cut expansion with new onion and bell pepper processors

Fresh colorful  cut bell peppers texture for background. Shallow depth of field

JBT’s recently-acquired FTNON fresh-cut machinery business has announced the launch of two solutions designed to make life easier for onion and bell pepper processors, both of which have been developed to include easy-to-clean features that comply with the highest hygienic standards. 

Introduced by FTNON at its recent customer open week, held in Horst, The Netherlands from October 29-November 3, the two systems place an emphasis not just on effectiveness and reliability, but crucially also on ease-of-use and cleanability.

Cleanability factor
The newly-launched FTNON Sweet Pepper Decorer, designed to be very hygienic and completely cleanable, has been developed to remove cores and problematic seeds from bell peppers in the most efficient way possible, while also leaving a small footprint. 

According to FTNON’s Lars Heuvelmans, the compact machine, which can handle two bell peppers at a time, uses pneumatic coring devices remove the center of the peppers, before a high-pressure air system cleans out the remaining seeds. Leftover seeds, stems and cores are then removed outside the machine using a scraper.

The JBT FTNON Sweet Pepper Decorer

The JBT FTNON Sweet Pepper Decorer

In the next step, the cored and cleaned bell peppers are cut lengthwise into pieces by a mechanical segmenting station, which enables the peppers to be divided into halves, quarters or eights.

However, as well as its efficiency, a key feature of the decorer is its cleanability. “It’s easy to access all areas of the machine – you just slide out the drum and you have access to the inside, the drills and the knives,” explains Heuvelmans. “If you look at a bell pepper, inside there are a lot of small seeds which will get into every part of the machine, so cleanability is a very important feature.”

The JBT FTNON Magnetic Onion Peeler

The JBT FTNON Magnetic Onion Peeler

Reduced costs
Developed by FTNON in collaboration with US-based Gills Onions and the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), the FTNON Magnetic Onion Peeler focuses on yield, hygiene and convenience with the design, components and materials specially selected to ensure the machine gets a very high score on all points. 

By employing super magnetism, the system eliminates the need for wires, tubes, belts and springs, resulting in a machine with frictionless components, which has the effect of tremendously reducing maintenance costs. 

With hygiene requirements in the food sector becoming ever more stringent, Heuvelmans says ease-of-cleaning is also a key feature of the stainless steel Magnetic Onion Peeler. Waste and the peeled product are separated at the earliest possible stage, meaning the risk of contamination or waste peel reaching other areas of the machine is greatly reduced, while the design has eliminated chains and other hygienically vulnerable components. Both of which, adds Heuvelmans, make a very real difference, not only for improving hygiene but also for overall cleanability. 

Click for more information about FTNON solutions

Laser Food launches Natural Branding initiative across Europe

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Laser Food, the creator of innovative, environmentally-friending laser labelling for fresh fruit, has announced the Europe wide launch of a new brand name for the technology, Natural Branding. Reflecting the profound environmental benefits of the system, the Natural Branding name will shortly be seen in grocery retail outlets and supermarkets across Europe, emphasising the growing public acceptance of the Laser Food-originated technology.

Initially introduced two years ago by Laser Food to accompany laser-labelled organic products, the Natural Branding name has proven to be a hit with consumers, receiving overwhelmingly positive feedback from shoppers and gathering media coverage across Europe. The initiative also took the top prize for Laser Food customer Eosta in the Sustainability Category at the Packaging Awards 2018. As well as Eosta, the system is now being used across the organic fruit sector, including by organic kiwifruit specialist Agricolli Bio and organic pumpkin marketer Bio Freshi.

Laser Food_kiwifruit

Laser Food managing director Jaime Sanfelix explained that as a result the company began to take steps to formally register the name at a Europe-wide level, acknowledging that laser labelling is recognised by increasing numbers of consumers first and foremost as Natural Branding.

He said: “Two years ago we started marketing organic fruits using a very interesting concept that we called Natural Branding. The concept generated a very positive response with consumers across Europe and was also well received by the media. Following that, we initiated the process of registering the Natural Branding name as a brand.

“As the leaders and the creators of the technology, it’s very satisfying to see how the Natural Branding brand name is now recognised by consumers across Europe, and how more and more people are acknowledging the great benefits it has for the environment.”

Laser Food_fruits

Sanfelix added that the recognition of the brand and system, which can now be found in many of Europe’s leading markets, including Germany, the Netherlands and France, further reinforced the hard work that Laser Food has undertaken since it first developing the technology in 2007.

About Laser Food
Laser Food’s Natural Branding can help both producers and retailers improve their environmental credentials for the simple reason that the system eliminates the need for wasteful paper labels. Approved for use in the EU, Natural Branding’s laser labelling technology adds labels and logos to fruit surfaces through a depigmentation process that does not harm the product in any way whatsoever.

Laser Food’s global expansion has been made possible thanks to its worldwide marketing agreement with JBT Corporation, which builds and promotes Laser Food’s Laser Mark technology worldwide. JBT also promotes Laser Food via jbtc.com and the @JBTLaserFood social media accounts on Facebook and Twitter.

Laser Food will be exhibiting with JBT at Fruit Attraction 2018 in Hall 6, Stand 6C05 in the Feria de Madrid conference centre, Madrid, Spain from 23-25 October.

JBT debuts SteriCompact UHT system to meet global smaller pack demand

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JBT has announced the launch of the SteriCompact processing system, the latest in the company’s Sterideal® HX UHT range of systems, which has been specially adapted to meet demand for smaller pack sizes in emerging markets.

The SteriCompact UHT, which is based on JBT’s globally successful Sterideal HX UHT system, will cater for the move towards reduced scale milk and juice production and pack sizes in developing economies, as well as specialized products in high-end markets.
Already in the process of being installed with processors in Brazil, Thailand and India, the system is designed for a smaller volume production in smaller packages – of down to 80ml – than has been common in most markets to date.

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Bram Bergsma, Product Line Operations Manager for Processing Systems at Amsterdam-based JBT Food & Dairy Systems, said: “In countries like India and Brazil, there’s a trend for smaller filling capacity machines and packaging. These are countries with large populations, but where people don’t necessarily have the income to afford the larger packs. The SteriCompact UHT has been developed for these markets.”

As well as standard dairy applications, the system, which handles lower-range capacity production of 2000-4000 liters per hour, can be configured with optional modules to process Extended Shelf Life milk, juices with small fibers and soy products. The SteriCompact UHT is designed around one central skid containing all the process components including the electrical system, which results in reduced installation time and cost.

Sterideal-HX SteriCompact_767x421_A

However, in addition to emerging markets in Asia and Latin America, the system has also attracted attention in Europe and the US. “We’ve received significant interest from Spain and the US for smaller capacity lines for smaller batches,” said Bergsma. “This is for products produced in small amounts where the flavor can change frequently, so having the SteriCompact UHT in place will help avoid waste.”

About Sterideal XH UHT systems
Dairy producers worldwide favor the JBT Food & Dairy Systems Sterideal HX UHT concept for its robustness, resulting product quality and ease of operation. The unique helical configuration of concentric tubes ensures effective thermal treatment combined with efficient heat recovery and optimal product handling. The tubular in-flow processor is used for pasteurizing and sterilizing dairy products, juices and higher viscosity products like tomato sauces and desserts.

Learn more about the Sterideal HX SteriCompact UHT

Leading through innovation: JBT’s winning focus on product development

JBT In-container sterilization_cans

Consumer and retailer demand for new, ever more convenient – not to mention eye-catching – products is a trend that seems to be constantly evolving, driving growth in new categories and sub-categories. One of the people at JBT who keeps a close eye on this melting pot of innovation is Douglas Woodruff, Director of Research and Development for JBT Liquid Foods, whose job it is not just to respond to new trends in the category, but also to anticipate and prepare for them.

Among the most important of these current trends is the drive for convenience, which is leading to smaller serving sizes and further demand for re-closable packages. “There’s a desire to have unique, “functional” beverages and provide more variety at the convenience and grocery stores, which means we need to adapt equipment for shorter runs or more variation in one run,” says Woodruff. 

Another important trend, he continues, is the desire for higher quality foods, leading to the development of safer, better-quality food products than those that were widely-available even just ten years ago.

Based in Lakeland, Florida, Woodruff’s principal focus when it comes to R&D is to stay ahead of evolving market trends with new products and processes, explaining that JBT has made a lot of progress on both fronts in the last 18 months. 

JBT-Ohmic

The JBT Sterideal Ohmic Heat Exchanger

Product Innovations
The result of several years’ development work, in 2018 JBT is launching high capacity solutions for sterilized food in flexible packaging (pouches) for both aseptic processing and in-container sterilization processes. “In this way we are moving ahead the technology for different types of products in different types of markets,” says Woodruff. “We see the packaging revolution happening in both aseptic and in-container packaging; for that reason we’re making high volume solutions for both of these”.

Woodruff says he is also excited about the introduction of JBT’s new In-Flow Sterideal® Ohmic Systems, which incorporate the Ohmic Heater, Particulate Pump and other technologies into systems that are configured to order for customers who have high quality and thermally sensitive foods with or without particles.

Process Innovations
In terms of process, significant work has also been achieved over recent months with the standardization of the New Product Development process across the Liquid Foods spectrum. “Whereas each business unit used to have its own development pipeline and execution process, we now have a common process across the Liquid Foods business units so we have a common way of selecting, executing and commercializing new products,” explains Woodruff.

Find out more about JBT’s Research & Technology Centers

Download the JBT White Paper on Continuous In-container Sterilization Technology

Extended vacuum kit boosts tomato peeler performance

Tomato

JBT has introduced a new extension upgrade kit for existing JBT SP-20 and SP-30 tomato peelers which can greatly improve the performance and efficiency of older machinery, preserving more meat and juice, while increasing the typical output of the systems.

The subject of a year-long trial with a JBT customer in Northern California, the Extended Vacuum Kit significantly boosts average production volumes, in the process making older equipment competitive with newer models and commercially viable. 

The upgrade kit has been developed by JBT to modify the SP-20 and SP-30 Tomato Peeling Systems, used successfully by leading tomato processors for many years, which will substantially improve throughput capacity and peeling performance.

SP-30 with Extended Vacuum Kit

JBT’s SP-30 with the Extended Vacuum Kit

Dramatic results
The extended vacuum kit will enable dramatic improvements in both throughput and peel removal efficiency, with a minimal investment, according to JBT’s Chuck Ward.

“The SP-20 and SP-30 peelers have a small vacuum area contained within the discharge value, which is used to peel the tomato – now we’ve added a second valve on the discharge and a vacuum chute in-between those two valves, which increases the area of vacuum and exposure time on the tomatoes,” he explains. “It dislodges the skins much more efficiently, in the process increasing the capacity of the peelers from 30 tonnes per hour to 45 tonnes per hour.”

JBT Extended Vacuum Kit - illustration

The upgrade kit also removes the risk of over-peeling by ensuring more efficient tomato skin removal. “With the old system, a lot of people over peeled, taking away the juice and the meat,” says Ward. “With the vacuum chute extension upgrade kit, the tomatoes come out very clean and just the peels are removed, so it’s made an older machine competitive and viable again.”

In the case of the Northern California trial, Ward says the customer – who runs five additional SP-20 peelers, could achieve the same level of output with much greater quality, with just three peelers, thanks to the extended vacuum kit.

Click HERE to learn more about the Extended Vacuum Kit

JBT launches complete solution for cold pressed juice and puree producers

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JBT has introduced a complete, combined solution for small and medium-sized juice processors who are seeking a more efficient, effective and simpler-to-clean system than typical batch bag press solutions. A combination of three pieces of equipment, JBT’s Fruit and Vegetable Processing Solution is ideal for premium juices and blends produced by smaller juice marketers.

The solution can be assembled using three JBT unit operations: a) an FVX5 fruit and vegetable extractor, which receives the raw products and performs the initial size reduction; b) an FTE50 Turbo Finisher, which produces a puree from the mash created with the FVX5; and, c) an optional screw or paddle finisher to deliver juice with a medium-to-high solid content. For a very thin product, the juice can also be sent through a decanting system.

According to Michael Mas, JBT’s Global Product Line Director for Fruit and Vegetable Processing, a number of these combined solutions have been sold over recent months with more expected to follow. “It’s aimed at super premium products, you can use it for juices, blends and drinks; we have one in the United States creating blended drinks from apples, carrots, ginger, and leafy greens,” explains Mas. 

FVX-5

JBT’s FVX5 fruit and vegetable extractor

“The system is for smaller processors looking to move from batch processing,” he continues. “The typical equipment for smaller processors is a batch press where the fruit is cut up and placed in a bag which squeezes the fruit to extract the juice. You then have to open the bag and throw away the leftover mash and clean the bag, but it’s not the easiest system to clean.”

By contrast, JBT’s system offers a seamless flow, which delivers continuous flow processing instead of having to do batches, with a flexibility that allows companies to blend in fruits and vegetables during the process. “If you want to have, for example, a mix of apples, carrot and kale, you can throw them all into the same hopper and it blends on a continuous basis,” says Mas. 

Hygienic design and cleanability are also key design features. With a bag press, you have to physically clean it, wash it and maybe put it in caustic soda to make sure the bag is clean. With a CIP capable process, you can hook it up and run it through a complete cleaning process without being forced to take everything apart,” he adds.

Find out more about JBT’s Fruit and Vegetable Processing Solution

JBT’s next generation Multi Fruit Juicer boosts output and visibility

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JBT, the leading solutions provider for food and beverage processors, has launched the next generation of the highly successful Fresh’n Squeeze® Multi Fruit Juicer, which as well as offering unparalleled juicing, delivers a faster, more attractive and easy to operate version of the classic system.

Previewed at the recent National Restaurant Show 2018, JBT’s next generation Multi Fruit Juicer offers a 65% increase in juice output over the existing model, as well as a more open and appealing design.

Capable of handling up to 33 pieces of fruit per minute, the latest version of the Multi Fruit Juicer can produce 55 gallons of fresh juice during every hour of operation, up from the 33 gallons per hour delivered by the previous model. In addition to moving from a one-case to a two-case hopper, the Juicer is also markedly more attractive in appearance than its predecessor, featuring viewing windows showing the juicing process and increased visibility of stored citrus.

JBT new Multi Fruit Juicer close-up

The Multi Fruit Juicer was one of the star attractions at the booth of JBT Master Distributor Juicernet by Mulligan Associates at the National Restaurant Show, where company founders Bonnie and Gene Mulligan showcased the system to visitors from across North America.

Mulligan, which has been JBT’s exclusive representative in North America for the past 18 years, highlighted the system to many of its 2000 dealers from across the US and Canada as part of its 33rd consecutive appearance as an exhibitor at the trade event.

Juicernet’s co-founder Bonnie Mulligan said: “The new JBT Multi Fruit Juicer brings a real theater effect because you are able to see what’s going on inside the juicer. Eliminating all the casing and making it stainless steel makes it much easier for cleaning, while the increased speed is another huge benefit. It will help having a two-case hopper instead of a one-case hopper, and it just looks so much newer and fresher.”

Click HERE to find out more about the Fresh’n Squeeze range

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