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State-of-the-Art Ohio (U.S.) facility helps processors accelerate product rollout

Following its recent re-entry into the high pressure processing (HPP) market, Quintus Technologies is opening a state-of- the-art Application Center in Columbus, OH (U.S.). Under the leadership of Ngoc Phan, globally recognized as one of the world’s most experienced HPP application experts, the Center will assist food and beverage processors with the development of the preservative-free, ‘good-for-you’ products demanded by today’s consumers.

“Despite thousands of commercial HPP products currently available around the globe, one source of continued frustration to more food companies is the time involved in the realization of their new HPP products market rollouts,” observes Ed Williams, General Manager – Americas, Quintus Technologies. “A key objective of our new Application Center is to reduce those delays by putting our internal and external HPP expertise to work.”

The Center’s menu of services spans the entire HPP development process, from optimized product formulations and packaging to in-house pathogen validation, shelf-life studies, and assistance with HACCP implementation and regulatory compliance. In both scope and pace, evaluation and support offerings are geared to accelerate the speed at which processors bring new HPP products to market.

The new Application Center, part of a 5,200-sf demonstration suite, features a commercial size Quintus QIF 150L HPP modular system. Reflecting the company’s leadership role in high pressure for nearly three-quarters of a century, the press incorporates new mechanical and digital solutions such as an integrated pumping system, frequency-controlled motor drives, new smart-press functionality, and AI algorithm-based condition monitoring, all advances that improve efficiency and productivity.

The facility is also equipped with a test kitchen, microbiology laboratory, analytical laboratory, vacuum packaging machine, walk-in cooler, and freezer.

Application Center services are available to any food or beverage company wanting to advance the commercial growth of HPP foods. Processors interested in investing directly in a Quintus Technologies food system receive additional benefits through Quintus® Care, a comprehensive program of application know-how and best-in-class aftermarket technical support, designed for industry 4.0 and factory-of-the-future connectivity.

“We are very excited about the opportunities to help the food industry address global sustainability challenges such as food waste, product recalls, and related foodborne illnesses through the HPP technology we pioneered,” says Jan Söderström, CEO and President of Quintus Technologies. “We look forward to welcoming processors to our Application Center open house planned for late April 2022.”

The supply of early citrus fruits was increasing in São Paulo State (SP) in late March, while the demand from juice processors was lower, and businesses were facing a new period of restrictive measures to fight covid-19 in Brazil.

Although estimates do not point to an extremely high availability in April, supply should still be higher than that in March, since more early oranges should reach the ideal maturation stage to be harvested this month. As for demand, besides the new restrictive measures, logistic issues were constraining purchases from wholesalers and retailers in Brazil.

Among the major changes in food services during the covid-19 pandemic are the halt in school meals, which highly demands in natura oranges, and the closure of bars and restaurants, where the demand for juice is high. Thus, in March, fruits were mostly sold to supermarkets.

PRICES – Although orange prices were still high in March, underpinned by lower supply, they decreased late in the month. The average price for pear oranges in March was 38.71 BRL per 40.8-kilo box, on tree, 2.7 % down compared to that in February. For hamlin oranges (early variety), the average closed at 29.48 BRL/box, on tree, practically stable in the same comparison.

According to Cepea collaborators, some farmers anticipated the harvesting of pear oranges, aiming to take advantage of the current price levels – these agents are aware of the forecasts for higher supply of early oranges in the market from April onwards and, thus, fear quotes may drop in the coming weeks.

In the Brazilian market of tahiti lime, which is also largely sold to bars and restaurants, the decrease in the demand and the slightly higher supply pressed down quotes in March. Besides, the pace for exports and crushing slowed down.

The average price for tahiti lime closed at 20.60 BRL per 27-kilo box, harvested, 32.8 % down from that in February. However, despite this devaluation, prices are currently higher than that last year, due to lower production this season.