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Cryogenic freezing options in South Africa

The Cryoline family of cryogenic food freezing equipment is available to the South African market and meets the need of a variety of applications. The modern freezer designs use the latest control programs to increase efficiency while meeting stringent hygiene standards.

Cryogenic freezing of food with liquid nitrogen (LIN) and carbon dioxide (LIC) is a well-established process in the food industry. By making use of this process you will achieve the most convenient preservation method for food and leads to improved food taste, shape, texture, moisture and nutritional value. Achieving a high freezing speed will result in minimal dehydration and drip loss. It also leads to minimum cell destruction due to formation of small ice crystals.

The patented Cryoline CW (by Afrox) is a unique multi-purpose freezer. It takes only a few seconds to switch from the IQF-mode for small, free-rolling items, such as shrimps, pizza toppings, fruit and prepared foods, to the standard tunnel mode for traditional products, such as patties and pizzas.

In addition, it free-flowing product characteristics with very high belt loading, saving space and reducing running costs compared to conventional systems.

Built in Cryowave controllable vibration technology rapidly freezes the product, sealing in moisture as it is conveyed through the freezing zone. This retains weight and produces high yield and quality. As a cryogenic medium, either liquid nitrogen or carbon dioxide can be used, which further enhances the flexibility and versatility of the freezer.

The Cryoline CW freezer uses two zones within a single freezer compartment. In the front zone of the freezer, it employs a mechanism that imparts a vibratory motion, creating a wave-like motion along the length of the conveyor. As the product passes through the front section of the freezer, the agitation dislodges the product from the surface of the belt and from surrounding products, while it is sprayed with the chosen cryogen.

The combination of agitation and simultaneous injection of cryogen ensures rapid cooling of the product, forming an outer crust that locks in the moisture. This maintains the quality level, product yield and quality demanded for value-added, IQF seafood and poultry products. The second zone acts as a standard tunnel freezer and completes the freezing process after the initial crust freeze.

The simplicity of the design enables the customer to maximise productivity by reducing cleaning and maintenance downtime. These freezers are designed for hygiene and ease of cleaning, starting with the freezer’s sloping floors and centre trough drainage. All internal components are stainless steel or polyethylene construction. Modules are fully welded, ground and impeccably finished. The freezer top lifts vertically via an electric screw jack, providing full access into the tunnel for cleaning. A control panel allows data storage of operating parameters for quality assurance, tracking and traceability.

Also attracting attention in the local food manufacturing sector is the new generation Cryoline CS compact, high-capacity spiral freezer. This first cryogenic self-stacking spiral freezer range has been built with the smallest footprint possible and is based on a new technology to make a more efficient and cost-effective freezer.

The eight-sided form minimises the space around the belt, achieving the highest possible cold gas speed. Nitrogen supply and gas balance are controlled by a state-of-the-art automatic system, reducing idle consumption compared to existing spiral freezers.

This product is suitable for freezing a wide range of products including meat patties, whole fish or fish fillets, pies, ice cream, pastries, pizza and ready-made dishes.

The spiral can also be used as a cooling unit. Extremely low operating temperatures are achieved by using liquid nitrogen which ensures rapid freezing to preserve the quality and the shape of the product and keep weight loss to a minimum. Cryogenic freezing is normally most economical at low to medium volumes, but this spiral is also suitable for high volumes or when high quality is needed.

This system offers a high level of hygiene and safety combined with low consumption and easy operation. The use of spray nozzles for detergent and rinsing water, together with the high performance of the circulation fan, ensure that both the belt and the whole interior of the freezer are completely cleaned and dried. After cleaning, the freezer can be opened for inspection by opening all doors, allowing full access to all parts of the freezing section. This, together with the all-stainless steel design, ensures that the freezer satisfies the highest hygiene demands in the food industry.

The spiral acts as a heat exchanger in which the liquid nitrogen is sprayed directly on the product, thus efficiently extracting heat from it. The generated cold gas is circulated around the products and then extracted by the exhaust system. The exhaust system in the Cryoline CS is adjustable, which means that the gas can be fully used before leaving the spiral, guaranteeing a very low gas consumption and low running cost.

For the spiral design, the working environment has been given the utmost importance. It has been secured by choosing a low noise fan and by carefully insulating all points through which contact to the very cold nitrogen could occur.

The spiral is easy to operate by means of automatic control devices. It can be cooled down and ready for operation in less than 20 minutes.

Afrox offers the services of dedicated application engineers trained to support every aspect of cryogenic freezing.

"The food industry is constantly challenged to meet the ever-increasing consumer demands for quality and variety," says Afrox’s Hendrik Pretorius "Consumers are also seeking a continuous stream of innovative and interesting products. It is with pride that Afrox offers the food industry the world’s foremost solutions.”


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