The food industry is vast, from manufacturing to processing, storage and commercial kitchens there is a never ending procession of raw materials, final products and waste. The demands put on individual working environments within the food industry get ever greater. Demands which ensure that the end product is safe for the public and that the workplace is safe for the millions of people that work in the many areas of the industry.
Industrial fans play a vital role in maintaining these high standards. It is no exaggeration to say that without the modern highly efficient industrial fans, that are largely taken for granted, the food industry would grind to a halt. From the very beginning of a food process, right up to the point of consumption, industrial fans play a vital role.
Industrial Fans in Food Processing
Industrial fans are a necessary part of most items of machinery used in the food processing industry. Both centrifugal and axial fans manufactured from stainless steel are favored in the food industry, stainless steel being hygienic and easy to clean. Specialized coatings may be required for some applications and fans may require custom manufacturing to suit individual applications.
Flours, cereal and grain require high levels of efficient extraction, not only is particle polluted air a potential respiratory risk to workers, but starch and flour are also extremely flammable. In the wrong conditions and without adequate extraction and air purification, these, otherwise innocuous food stuffs, can explode. The necessities of industrial fans are many fold.
Granular food stuffs are very often conveyed by pneumatic conveyers which require a constant stream of clean air supplied by high pressure fans. High pressure fans are also used to hold food packaging receptacles, such as bottles or jars, securely to a moving conveyor. Fans may also be used to inflate the outer packaging of a food product, or quite the opposite, by vacuum packing an end product. Food products often require storage with controlled temperatures and humidity, both during and at the end of processing.
Many food production processes require a drying action either during or after production. Industrial fans play a vital part in the water extraction from many food ingredients, such as fruit and vegetables. The dehydration of many products, including meat is essential to reduce the risk of bacterial growth. Where necessary, industrial fans can be utilized to blow cool or hot air though a product. During some applications this may be done with a high pressure fan.
The food industry relies on fans for the cooling of cooked products, very often on a conveyer prior packaging and then on to commercial refrigeration plants. Cold storage, uniform temperature and humidity control will all be maintained by industrial fans. Further, transportation of the end product to the next distributor requires industrial fans to maintain the ambient balance of temperature and humidity during its conveyance.
Whether the product is transported to a wholesaler or directly to a retail outlet, it is never away from the influence of an industrial fan. Warehouses, supermarkets and local shops all rely on ambient air control and refrigeration, all of which are delivered by industrial fans. These fans must be able to work continuously without fail and be able to deliver ambient air within close parameters of temperature and quality.
But the presence of industrial fans in the food industry is not just limited to processing, packaging, storage and transport. Every day thousands of tons of food are being stored and then cooked for our pleasure, in hotels, restaurants and cafes throughout the world.
Food for Pleasure
Laws require that they too store food at prescribed temperatures in industrial refrigeration units prior to cooking for our pleasure. Cooking at a commercial level, again by law, requires extraction. In a commercial kitchen clean, hygienic extraction is essential for the well-being of the kitchen workers and to ensure the quality of the cooked product.
Many fats, grease and vapors produced during cooking are dangerous, both by inhalation and as a fire risk. Air pollutants can be an irritant to workers, the eyes and exposed skin being particularly vulnerable. Efficient, hygienic extraction by industrial fans is important for reducing the risks to workers and the overall safety of the working environment.
Across the world food is a multi-billion-dollar industry. From field and farm, to refrigerator and plate. Extraction and ventilation, heating and cooling, moving and storing, cooking and freezing, it is totally reliant on industrial fans.