Continuous product handling: technical innovation helps reduce food wastage

As part of the continous improvement of their process, the Pro Sain company, specializing in the processing of organic fruits and vegetables, chose to replace its old cleated conveyor belt, with a Liftvrac.

Michel Tresserras, the Technical Director, tells us again of the benefits that the new handling system brings to the family company, installed at Bages in the Eastern Pyrénées.

“Our positioning pushes us to be particularly demanding in terms of processes.”

Pro Sain opted for the sustainable development as of its creation in 1968, at a time when very few people still believed in it. 40 years later, the company proposes over 200 of its developed recipes, with 100% organic ingredients and claims the inimitable taste of fruits and vegetables harvested at maturity, in proximity of the factory.
The usage of these better tasting products, delicate to manipulate, together with a willingness to reduce the waste materials released into the environment, guides the company’s choices for the continuous improvement of its processes.

“The principal advantage of the Liftvrac is to eradicate the loss of product that we had with our conveyor belt with cleats. This equipment helps us reduce food wastage and generates high returns on the short term.”

Despite all the care taken by Pro Sain in handling their products, the conveyor belt with cleats previously used generated a loss of between 3% and 5% of the base products. The losses were not only damaging the company’s financial economy, but they were ethically incompatible with their strong convictions.
Michel Tresserras was therefore in search of a new conveying system, and opted for the Liftvrac, an elevating conveyor equipped with a belt that forms a tube around the elevated product and accompanies it all along the elevation process. Thanks to the Liftvrac, Pro Sain can now elevate all types of vegetables, peas or sweetcorn included, to their dosage machines, without any loss of product.

“The tests we made beforehand, completely reassured us of the capacity of the Liftvrac to transport fragile products.”
Convinced from the start that the Liftvrac will eliminate their loss of product problems, Michel Tresserras nevertheless feared that the new handling system would put too much stress on the extremely fragile ingredients processed at Pro Sain.

This fear was completely removed after the validation tests were done, especially on Pro Sain’s freshly made raviolis. Though particularly brittle and sensitive to crushing, fresh raviolis were in no way damaged by the Liftvrac. It was the same outcome for the vegetables, where the company makes a point of not handling until they have reached perfect maturity.
“The Liftvrac is so easy to clean. This is very important for the vegetables that are fried before they are put into jars.”
Michel Tresserras really appreciates the easiness of cleaning the Liftvrac. All of the elements are easily dismantled in around 10 minutes and the conveyor can be perfectly cleaned. This point is even more beneficial for the vegetables which are fried before being handled. It allows all traces of grease to be removed, which was almost impossible on a band with cleats. The rapidity of the cleaning process also has an environmental impact for the company, as it reduces its usage of water.

For more details on the Liftvrac, click here: elevating conveyor for bulk products

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