Trends in food processing equipment in the US: Part 1


According to Tom Chromy, Chart Industries CO2 Market Specialist, liquid nitrogen (LN2) and liquid CO2 (LCO2) are becoming much more prevalent in the market due to four key influencers; environmental issues surrounding refrigerants; increased expense of mechanical refrigeration; increased supply of LCO2; and improved purity of LN2.

Chromy believes that environmental concerns and refrigerant supply concerns are driving out old refrigeration technologies and making them less ‘interesting’. Customers are now looking at the total costs of refrigeration systems, which leads them to assessing LN2 and LCO2 as more economically viable supply options. Furthermore, demand for LCO2 (from ethanol plants) and LN2 supply (excess supply from ASU’s) has become so prevalent and readily available, that the costs of delivery have now stabilised.

Tim Neeser, Vice-President of Customer Service & Marketing, has observed new trends for food processing equipment emerge in recent years. “The biggest change that I have seen has been the upgrading of the freezing equipment to accept LN2 or LCO2,” he says. “Since LCO2 flashes to dry ice, this is quite the design achievement. This allows the user to alter the supply, depending on the gas availability and/or cost.”

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