Industry: Fruit and Vegetables (3114) Meat (NAICS 3116)
Process Brief: Canned products are sterilized by heat after they are sealed
Energy source: Steam/Natural Gas
Energy Intensity: 100-300 Btu/lb
Retort systems sterilize canned products after they are sealed. Hydrostatic sterilizers use a column of water to maintain the pressure in the sterilizing zone. The conveyor line of cans enters the sterilizer at the top of the water column and travel downward to the bottom of the steam dome, which is the heart of the sterilizer. Once in the steam dome the cans make several passes through the steam zone before being conveyed again to the bottom of the steam dome, into the exit water column and out of the sterilizer. The water column keeps steam inside the steam dome and provides the necessary pressurization. The height of the water column, approximately 35 feet, means that the equipment is often located outdoors.
The hydrostatic sterilizer accommodates a wide range of can sizes because it uses a water column instead of a complicated transfer valve as in the rotary cooker. As with other retort systems, the most common source of thermal energy for the process is saturated steam.
FMC FoodTech Chicago
200 East Randolph
Chicago, IL 60601
Web site: www.fmctechnologies.com
Stork Food and Dairy Systems, Inc.
P.O. Box 1258
Gainesville, GA 30503
Web site: www.stork-usa.com