Talking of pigs in a food processing plant brings to mind an abattoir or a plant in a really sad state of cleanliness. However, this pig is actually behind new operations in Food Processing that improve hygine while saving capacity, chemical, product and water. The principle is explained in this video
I remember first hearing of pipeline pigs when the petroleum pipeline from Durban to Johannesburg was installed. This was basically a rigid plug with the diameter of the pipeline that is pumped through the pipeline between two different fluids. The novelty here is a flexible plug which can even separate fluids in a heat exchanger. The second video demonstrates the process although the transition back to process flow is somewhat spoiled by a demo failure.
While both this videos feature the Food Process Engineering company GEA, this is not to imply they are the only or a preferred supplier. The links below are to other online starting points, but it would be wise to approach your suppliers for further information.
As a Chemical Engineer I have always promoted the role that the Chemical Engineering Unit Operation plays in food manufacturing.
click image to download the pdf
As well as elaborating on Chemical Engineering’s input to progress in the industry, this article simply charts the changes which lead from what we would now call artisanal local food to multinational worldwide distribution of cheap food.
The question as to which of these two is the better from the energy, global warming, health, taste, sustainability …. viewpoints is something that requires attention as the world gets squeezed and another opportunity for Chemical Engineers.
Here is a 288 page , high quality manual covering the steps required to set up a small food processing business.
click image to visit website
The table of the contents of the book says it all
The only downside is that it is written for Canada so many of the contacts are not applicable to local circumstances. However, the quality and depth of the information and the fact that it’s free to download make its retention as a reference worthwhile.
Two weeks after the end of the 2010 World Cup, Johannesburg hosts the annual conglomeration of Food Processing exhibitions. This minimizes transport costs and allows attendance at seven exhibitions in a week.
(click the image to open website)
Last year the exhibition which displayed the wares of 401 exhibitors from 39 countries was visited by almost 12 000 visitors from 45 countries.
I copy this post from Ecowordly, because I think all food processing industries should be investigating the potential of anaerobic digestion to convert waste into biogas to supplement their energy supply. It makes sense in lots of ways!
SAB Miller, South African grown, second largest brewer in the world has introduced anaerobic digestion to treat the waste leaving its Alrode Brewery in Gauteng, South Africa. Anaerobic fermentation of organic material producesmethane, which is used to reduce the consumption of fossil fuel based energy.
In the brewery the waste is a collection of unavoidable losses of carbohydrate and protein rich materials, which would otherwise be sold as beer or byproduct and the large quantities of water used to maintain a hygienic operation. Continue reading →
The company is clearly an e-commerce company which has built a management team of Nigerians who are able to drive both the food product and the sourcing issues of the company.
As many of these foods are common to other West African countries the market is surely wider than Nigerians in the US. Then there is also an opportunity to apply the business model to other National Foods and set up stores for other groups.
The company is NY based and prices need to be judged by those who know the foods not me. As examples yam roots sell for $2.30 / lb, garri around $1 / lb, dried shrimp $12 / lb and palm oil $25 / gall.