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JBT prepares for International Citrus & Beverage Conference

Orange juice factory - generic

JBT’s state-of-the-art solutions for processing and aseptic solutions for drinks and juice companies worldwide are set to be highlighted to new and potential customers alike at the upcoming 2016 International Citrus & Beverage Conference in Clearwater, Florida.

To be held at the Sheraton Sand Key Resort from September 20-23, the three-day event for citrus, juice and beverage professionals, which is expected to attract participants from Brazil, China, Costa Rica, Mexico, the US and many more countries, will focus on key issues facing the sector and highlight new and innovative products.

JBT, which will be taking a delegation of global sales managers, will be among the significant industry players doing just that, with highlighted products likely to include JBT’s Fresh’n Squeeze® range, as well as its fruit and vegetable processing, and aseptic solutions.


International scope
Originally held in Gainesville, Florida and organized by Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences at the University of Florida, the International Citrus & Beverage Conference once focused solely on citrus, and specifically from the Sunshine State.

As citrus production has moved further south, so has the location of the event which relocated south to Clearwater, where it is held today. With Florida citrus production having declined over recent years – in part due to climate and disease – the conference has widened its reach to include a far greater range of juices and beverages, while also becoming much broader in its international scope.

Orange juice generic

Latest developments
With JBT’s global customers and alliance partners – including IceGen and Aurratech – expected to be present at the event, the company is hoping to not just meet up with existing customers, but also to learn about new aspects of the industry and highlight its own solutions.

“We expect to have customers and alliance partners from all over the globe at this the event,” explains JBT Global Marketing Manager for Liquid Foods, Carlos Saavedra. “We host a Latin-themed night for our friends from Mexico, Brazil, Costa Rica, Spain and other Hispanic countries, as well as a North American customer appreciation dinner for other US-based customers, as well as meeting new and potential customers and alliance partners.”

“At the end of the day this event is all about networking and learning about the latest developments in the citrus and beverage sector,” he adds.

JBT introduces innovative SaniClean Belt Conveyor


JBT has developed one of the most easy-to-clean belt conveyors in the market today, which can be taken apart and reassembled in less than a minute to enable effective cleaning of food debris, helping food companies improve both food safety and hygiene.

Set to be launched commercially this year, the innovative SaniClean Belt Conveyor allows for thorough cleaning at high speed, meaning the time a production line is out of action for cleaning is minimized to the shortest amount possible.

“The biggest feature of it is that it is super easy to clean,” explains JBT Aftermarket Parts & Equipment Sales Manager Jeff Cook. “With most conventional conveyors, you can’t get into them and clean under or around the belt – you need the maintenance department to take them apart to do the cleaning.


“The SaniClean requires no tools to get in there and under the belt and clean because you can literally take it apart in 10 seconds*.”

SaniClean also includes features that guard against bacterial contamination. Sanitary, ‘food-safe’ welds are carried out during manufacturing to ensure no micro-organisms take root in any crevices, which can be difficult to clean.

SaniClean close-up

Easily adaptable
The system is also easily adapted to multi-stage cleaning. “if you are running in the middle of the day and just want to do a light clean up, you can spray inside the frame cut-outs and then later do a thorough clean,” says Cook.

“Everything was thought out in the design so it can be cleaned quickly and easily without having to call in the maintenance department. The value of product comes through being able to clean it quickly, easily and very effectively.”

SaniClean close-up side

SaniClean, which is suitable for almost all food products from fresh fruits and vegetables through to meat and poultry, also features removable plastic belt-supports below the conveyor for easy cleaning, making a change from conventional rollers which can be a challenge to access.

Also unlike conventional conveyor belt systems, SaniClean can handle high temperature cleaning of up to 180 degrees with no detrimental impact on components.

Currently available as a prototype, SaniClean is due to be commercially launched in October to coincide with its installation at a Sunkist packing facility, while installation for other products – both fresh and processed – is in the pipeline.

For more information about SaniClean, please contact Jeff Cook

*Disassembly time increases as conveyor length and width increases.

JBT’s produce bin scrubber helps meet new food safety rules

Generic pistachios

JBT’s Fresh Produce Technologies team has developed and sold its first Tall non-vented produce bin scrubber to Setton Farms, a large pistachio nut packing facility in central California. 

This product is an extension of JBT’s highly successful patented Bin Scrubber product line which features extremely effective bin cleaning and does it more efficiently in a smaller footprint than other designs in the market.

The “Tall Bin Scrubber” design now allows fruit, vegetables and nut packers and processers who use field bins over 32 inches in height in their operation to quickly and effectively clean their bins.  Most tall bins are currently cleaned by hand which is expensive and inconsistent.

JBT Tall Bin Scrubber

The Tall Bin Scrubber has all of the proven benefits of the standard Bin Scrubber like low water use, mechanical scrubbing, low power consumption, and adjustable scrubbing cycles plus new added benefits.

These new benefits include a telescoping brush scrubbing head to ensure all internal surfaces of  a tall bin are cleaned, a bin rinse feature for non-vented bins, and a bin drying stage also for non-vented bins. This new JBT product will help our customers to meet new food safety laws and requirements related to bin cleaning and handling at a low cost per bin.

JBT also manufactures necessary support equipment and automation for the Tall Bin Scrubber such as bin handling conveyors, bin stacking and unstacking products, and our Chemtrol recycled water monitoring and sanitizing system.

Focus on JBT innovations at Brazil citrus workshop

Orange juice factory - generic

Innovative helical sterilization technology from JBT’s Stork Food and Dairy Systems (SFDS) business unit is set to be used for the first time for citrus processing in Brazil following negotiations with a national producer, delegates to the recent JBT Citrus Technical Workshop in Brazil learned.

Attendees to the event, which took place on May 31 this year at JBT’s Araraquara facility, were told about the benefits the SDFS heat exchange technology can deliver in terms of maintenance, as considerably less welding and fewer gaskets are required than in conventional systems.

Based on this technology, JBT is planning the launch of the first SFDS pasteurizer for orange juice, which will be manufactured in the Netherlands and Brazil. JBT’s Januário Soligon said that the company was completing negotiations with a Brazil-based customer to introduce the system, adding that no processors in Brazil or any other neighboring market were currently using the SFDS technology for orange juice.

JBT Araraquara seminar

Consistent results
Looking back on JBT’s most recent event in Araraquara, Soligon described it as fantastic in terms of both numbers of attendees and the amount of major citrus processors that were present.

“We discussed several important products related to better yield for juice extractors and our technologies for essential oil extraction, including d-Limonene,” he explained.

“We introduced the MORE system for extracting oil from citrus peel, which is very important for achieving a better oil recovery yield. We also introduced the READYGo d-LIMONENE (skid) system for d-limonene recovery which delivers an efficiency of 95% with high-quality oil extraction.

“The value of essential oils on the market is now between US$25-30 per kilo, so it’s a high value product and all the processors want to go for the maximum yield possible from the fruit.”

The seminar also looked at in-line automation technology, including the JBT finisher automation system which can improve orange juice yield by up to 3%. “We tested this with a customer during the course of a season and the results were very consistent,” added Soligon.

JBT’s next event will be an open house at its Araraquara facility from August 23-26 for existing citrus customers and interested companies and will include presentations on new JBT technologies for the sector.

JBT’s equipment business: fresh solutions for new sectors


Over the last decade JBT’s juice processing business has undergone a transformation that has taken the company from principally being a technology provider to the citrus processing industry to a global leader in the liquid foods field, offering solutions across the juice sector into dairy, canned foods, nutraceuticals and beyond.

Donn Sabato, JBT’s US Liquid Foods Sales Manager, is well qualified to speak about the radical changes that the company has undergone over recent years, having helped oversee much of JBT’s development in its domestic market.

Juice extraction leader
For much of its history, citrus processing has been at the core of JBT’s business, with the company leasing juice extraction equipment to businesses across the globe; in fact, Sabato estimates that JBT’s juice extractor accounts for approximately 75% of the world’s citrus juice production.

“We’re in all the countries – the US, Mexico, Brazil, Egypt, Spain – wherever there is citrus, there is JBT citrus extraction technology,” he says.

“What that entails is a machine that is never purchased by the customer – it’s a lease where we retain the asset, and we provide both service and the parts. That was, and continues to be, one of our core product lines.”

Orange juice generic

JBT also manufactures the ancillary equipment that goes around the extractor, from belt conveyors, bucket elevators, graders and sizers through to fruit handling equipment that feeds the extractors. And once the citrus has been juiced, JBT provides by-product recovery systems for pulp, valuable d-Limonene oil and other key ingredients.

But while such technologies remain among JBT’s core competencies, the onset of the citrus greening disease and its negative impact in particular on Florida’s citrus industry encouraged the company to look beyond citrus into other fruit and vegetable juice processing opportunities.

The application of related technology for fruit and vegetable purees ultimately led to the building of a new sweet potato juice plant in North Carolina in 2015.

New markets
With the appointment of Tom Giacomini as JBT CEO and President in 2013, the company began adding complementary businesses to its portfolio, including ICS, A&B Process Systems and Stork Food & Dairy Systems, while also integrating with JBT’s previously separate filling, closing, and in-container sterilization businesses based in Madera, California and Sint-Niklaas, Belgium.

The consequence of these actions, says Sabato, meant that JBT now offers far more than it has previously in terms of liquid and other foods, adding blending systems, installations, tank manufacturing, and enabling entry into the dairy industry through Stork Food & Dairy.

“We are growing both vertically and horizontally, not just in the juice sector, but also in markets other than those which we have historically served,” he explains.

While protecting its core market – citrus – Sabato says JBT has been exploring other liquid foods, fruit and vegetables, and increasingly dairy solutions and nutraceuticals.


He says JBT’s move into non-citrus fruit and vegetable juice markets was partly influenced by negative press coverage that affected orange juice sales.

“There have been a lot of attacks against carbonated beverages because of their high sugar content – orange juice has a high, natural sugar content as well as a lot more vitamins and minerals – but the press has lumped all sugary beverages together and negatively affected the amount of orange juice people are drinking,” explains Sabato. “This has opened up the doors to other fruits and vegetables as well as alternative beverages.”

Expansion plans
With the mergers and acquisitions, Sabato says the Liquid Foods business is now able to offer a more comprehensive package, adding that the company will continue to add to its portfolio, while also aiming to grow both organically and through new additions.

“We now offer pasteurizers, sterilization equipment, blending systems and skid mounted tank systems, which control, for example, how much cranberry juice is metered in to make a drink.

“Prior to merging with Stork Food & Dairy we only supplied bulk aseptic filling systems, meaning either in a 55 gallon drum or a 300 gallon aseptic bag-in-box, but now we can also fill individual retail bottles. The consolidation with our filling, closing, in-container sterilization business means we are also now in retorts, rotaries and hydrostatic sterilizers. In fact, over 50% of canned foods globally are processed through JBT’s sterilization technology.”

He adds: “We’re keeping our eyes on all of the new technologies for juice products and other liquid and canned food segments – where is the next generation of retail product? Is it going to be a pouch? Will it continue to be in cans or will it be in plastics? And, what is the best technology to make sure that product is safe for the marketplace? Where is the next piece of the puzzle that will fit in with what we’ve been building?

“Three to four years ago, the juice processing business of JBT had sales shy of US$150 million but through organic growth and acquisition our Liquid Foods portfolio has now trebled – so we’ve got a good track record and we feel good about the future.”

JBT to highlight vegetable juice processing innovations at IFT Chicago


As consumer awareness of healthy eating grows, so has demand for fresh vegetable juices. These vitamin-filled options are increasingly found in the beverage section of supermarkets, and are continuing to develop at a time when the traditional juice market is flat-to-declining.

With this demand in mind, JBT will have a team consisting of a research scientist and a product development engineer at North America’s leading food science annual meeting & expo, IFT 16, from July 16- 19 to discuss its latest innovations for vegetable juice and puree processing.

The highlight of the discussions will be the JBT READYGo™ vegetable/fruit processing test skid which integrates a series of primary processing steps including conveying, size reduction and heating operations on a single, compact stainless steel frame, and is designed to extract juice or puree from a variety of different vegetables and fruits.

JBT lab

Range of solutions
According to JBT’s Sam Mudgal, who will be attending the show, the READYGo vegetable skid is just one of a range of solutions for vegetable juice, puree and concentrates that the team will be focusing on at IFT Chicago.

“IFT is one of the biggest events for the food systems community – with participants from over 90 countries – so you have food technologists, scientists and engineers who come together and discuss really interesting topics in the industry and potential challenges,” he explains.

“We’ll be talking to industry folks at the expo about the technology and the research that we have done at our Lakeland Research & Technology Center, and what JBT has to offer in terms of processing capabilities.

Brandon Coles, who will also be attending for JBT, said: “In light of the widespread interest, we have spent considerable resources testing and researching juice and puree processing and now want to share that information. Even more than that though, we will continue the research and work with customers to explore how to improve vegetable processing for them.”

Other key products for the sector that JBT will be highlighting at the event include JBT Juice Finishers where juice extraction is achieved using a screw or paddle style finisher. These receive vegetable mash from the READYGo test skid, and can extract juice from everything from butternut squash to cucumbers.

Designed for high performance puree extraction, the JBT FTE Turbo Finisher, which can produce puree from whole vegetables, will also be part of the discussions at the show.


Significant advantages
Mudgal, a food scientist by profession, says a major advantage that JBT’s systems offer to vegetable processors compared with those of competitors is that JBT offers a continuous process. Rather than making juices in batches, JBT’s READYGo test skid allows for a continuous process for chopping, mashing and extracting juices from vegetables.

Another significant advantage of JBT’s system is its adaptability, says Mudgal, explaining that it can be used for vegetables with different morphologies and structures. “Extracting juice from a pumpkin is very different from that of a carrot, so you need different separation technologies for different matrices,” he explains.

“The good thing with JBT’s system is that you have a vegetable skid that basically makes a mash out of a variety of whole vegetables, whether that be cucumber, kale, celery or red beets. And once you have the mash, you can choose from a range of JBT finishers to make a puree or a juice with desired quality attributes.”

JBT’s dates solution: a winning combination of efficiency & service

Dates generic

Dates are a commodity widely consumed not just in the Middle East, but worldwide, and have become a key ingredient in many bakery products featured on supermarket shelves. But how best to process a notoriously sticky and delicate product?

JBT Corporation could well have the answer with a complete processing solution that is helping address the needs of fresh packers and ingredients processors alike.

Covering the moment of entry to the processor through to pallet-ready product, JBT’s system for dates processors also has a considerable edge over those offered by competitors due to the post-sales service provided by the company, which works to quickly overcome any problems.

As Aftermarket Parts & Equipment Sales Account Manager, Jeff Cook, explains, JBT constantly checks its machines to make sure they are performing as expected and, if not, makes sure the system is back to its optimum best as soon as possible.

Such a level of post-sales customer care is especially important for a product like dates, which runs through a complex processing cycle before being delivered to market.

“JBT has given me a lot of confidence, knowing that it’s not just my eyes looking at everything”

Jayson Simmons from leading US organic date company Woodspur Farms says JBT’s equipment and post-sales assistance has proven hugely helpful in maintaining a successful business. “If we have an issue or a problem we want resolved, JBT has been extremely helpful at providing engineering and bringing different viewpoints and thoughts to the table – that has given me a lot of confidence, knowing that it’s not just my eyes looking at everything,” he explains.

“One of the things I have appreciated most about JBT is that they have shown a great effort to help us improve our processes. They are not just a sales team or a company that wants to sell products, they actually want to solve a problem, and that I really appreciate.”

JBT dates machinery

How the process works

JBT’s solution for dates processors starts right from the moment the product is introduced to the processing line, says Cook. “Trays of dates which are about 20×20 inches are dumped manually onto a conveyor belt and there’s a little apparatus on top of that belt that knocks the sticky dates out of the trays,” he explains.

“The dates are then taken down several different conveyor belts before going to a pre-grade section where they are checked and pre-graded as required, throwing out those that have defects or are not up to standard.

“Then they go to a JBT food safe brush-bed where they are brushed and cleaned, and – after  sizing and grading – continue down the line to one of our automated weight fillers. Here the dates fall into a box and once the box reaches a specified weight, the filler stops, pushes the box out, and a new one comes in.

“The boxes continue along a carton conveyor, through a metal detector and then on to a tape machine, before finally being manually placed onto pallets.”

Dates candies

Dates as an ingredient

For dates destined to be ground up and used in candy bakes, the process involves a pitter, which removes the pit before the product goes through a tumbler where it can be coated, for example in coconut shavings or nuts.

Cook says JBT is currently developing a complementary solution that will return the excess coating back to the front of the line for further processing or reuse.

Once the dates are finished being coated, they are placed in plastic clamshells, moved down the line on a conveyor, and manually packed into cartons.

Looking further ahead, JBT’s equipment business has been working closely with other JBT business units to broaden its offering for processors. Cook says a system to hydrate and rehydrate the dates is currently being developed.

Dates display

Post-sales focus

JBT currently supplies the system to US dates processors and packers, covering a swath of land from Southern California to Arizona, but Cook says the company is aiming to reach potential clients on a global basis.

The reason for this confidence is the sales and post-sales coverage provided by JBT which sets it apart from its competitors.

“Anyone can make a mousetrap, but are they there to support it later down the road when there are maintenance needs, repairs, things that can go wrong in a processing line? A lot of our competitors may just sell equipment and then walk away. There is no post-sales support, which is something we firmly believe in,” he says.

“JBT’s engineers get involved with the customers’ issues and then come up with a solution for them,” Cook adds.

For more information, please contact Jeff Cook at Jeff.Cook@JBTC.COM

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