Food Industry Humidity Control – 6 Reasons Why Dehumidifiers Can Improve Production
June 12, 2017
The Food & Drinks Industry is a key customer in our business of dehumidification, temperature control, condensation prevention and speeding up the drying process.
Not only is this important because we are all food lovers here at dehum but because our knowledge and skill set has enabled us to make major improvements and introduce innovative processes within this sector.
An obstacle we often come across is that food & drink manufacturers are not always aware that the reason they are experiencing production issues is due to uncontrolled humidity levels within their facility.
One of the areas dehum is involved in, is helping businesses understand why humidity can play such havoc with production and the solutions available to make many of these production problems a distant memory.
So how can dehumidifiers play such an important role within food & drink manufacturing:
1. IMPROVE PRODUCTION SPEED & CAPACITY
When your production is drying, from stove drying to dry curing, days and even weeks can be wasted simply waiting for the process and drying to occur naturally. An uncontrolled environment leaves the process open to changes in ambient conditions, giving varied results and sometimes even halts production. All of this can be avoided. Can you imagine the gains and savings if production went from 5 days to 1.5 mins, stove drying production changes doubled the output of existing stoves and dry curing meat meant what was believed to be unachievable was now a standard production cycle. Faster drying times will of course mean more can be produced at a greater speed, whilst retaining the quality of the product. A win, win situation.
2. IMPROVE PRODUCT QUALITY
From preventing food clumping together such as dried fruit, ending up misshapen, a frequent issue within bread manufacturing, or being the wrong colour, chocolate for example, dehumidifiers play a major part in helping to improve the finished quality of the product. In plastic drink bottle production, water droplets from condensation can cause bumps to form on the mold surface. This will make it virtually impossible for labels to stay in place. Better quality products will last longer if they are free from defects that could result in reducing their shelf-life. A longer shelf-life is attractive to both store owner and consumer and in turn helps prevent wastage, saving costs and improving the bottom line.
3. CONSISTENT PRODUCTION RATE
Outdoor winter conditions, with a low humidity provide an ideal climate for most processes within food production. However, the summer months are not so agreeable. By controlling the humidity levels all year round, you can achieve consistent product quality. In other words, a constant production rate regardless of season and external conditions. The same great product every time; exactly what the consumers wants.
4. IMPROVE HYGIENE
By controlling relative humidity levels during food manufacturing and storage will reduce the risk of condensation forming. The big problem with food condensation is that it is closely followed by fungus and mould. Whether condensation appears on the packaging (causing labels to slip) or on the food itself (leading to mould and fungus appearing), condensation is a serious hygiene risk. Improving hygiene standards not only improves food quality but health & safety standards for employees.
5. REDUCE WASTAGE
Food wastage isn’t just a complete waste of money but it also just feels wrong. Unfortunately, with high consumer expectations and growing competition, producing the best and throwing away anything that doesn’t meet standards is a necessity. Finding ways to prevent wastage needs to be a company priority. The proper use of dehumidifiers can significantly help reduce food wastage by helping you to get it right first time.
6. REDUCE ENERGY USAGE
Achieving constant relative humidity levels within the production suite will help expensive machinery perform more efficiently. Excess indoor air moisture can cause condensation on equipment, wet floors and saturated electrical panels. Equipment is less likely to experience blockages, costly breakdowns and will undoubtedly require less maintenance and cleaning if humidity is controlled and condensation and in turn corrosion is prevented.
dehum is proud to be working with many manufacturers in this sector. We have been instrumental to the introduction of new techniques which have:
- Stopped dried fruit and jellied sweets from clumping together
- Prevented bottled drink labels from peeling off and cans from rusting
- Created efficient food production cooling techniques to stop bread products from getting soggy and misshapen during cooling
- Significantly reduced the drying times of store dry foods likes spices, cereals and foam/jellied confectionery.
- Improved the transportation of powdered goods (sugar, salt, flour) to prevent spoilage and clumping.
All these things and more have been done and we relish what others believe can’t be done.
You can read more about some of the unique applications that dehum have designed and installed within the food & drink industry dehum.com/applications/food-drink/.
If you would like to find out more about how dehum can work with your business, please visit our website www.dehum.com, or call 01926 882624.