Fresh Del Monte Produce has achieved key strides toward its operational sustainability goals as a result of Inteligistics’ InteliCool™ system. Western Growers Center for Innovation and Technology (WGCIT) recently assisted Inteligistics in the evaluation of this system at the purveyor’s Salinas, California, and Yuma, Arizona, facilities, which showed reductions in cooling cycle time, electric power savings, reduced CO2 emissions, and overall efficiency improvement of 30 percent.
“By transforming this process from manual to electronic and incorporating real-time temperature and pressure data using InteliCool, we have changed the vacuum cooling process into a climate-smart, dynamic, data-driven decision, instead of one relying on static data and operator experience,” reported Hans Sauter, Senior Vice President for R&D and Food Safety and Chief Sustainability Officer for Fresh Del Monte Produce Company.
InteliCool is a component of an advanced suite of innovative technologies designed to optimize efficiency, quality, and profitability in the perishables industries. The cutting-edge technology combines wireless product core temperature sensors and secure cloud-based servers for continuous visibility and analysis using Inteligistics proprietary software, according to a press release. Operators are able to monitor status in real-time, and commands are sent back to the cooling tube control system to execute cycle completion once the core target temperature has been reached.
The study, which lasted three years, involved over 9,000 vacuum tube cooling cycles on a range of produce commodities at Fresh Del Monte’s facilities.
“The Western Growers Center for Innovation and Technology was created to help identify industry priorities, assist companies to discover technologies to address those priorities, set up testing, and facilitate industry feedback and communicate progress to California, Arizona, and Colorado fresh produce farmers,” said Walt Duflock, Vice President of Innovation. “This thorough evaluation of InteliCool is our first in-depth case study and is a proof-of-concept of the value WGCIT brings to the industry.”
The patented InteliCool system is among the first innovations of its kind that continuously monitors product core temperatures throughout the cooling cycle.
As noted in the release, a similar technology is optimized for small fruits and certain vegetables such as cabbage and cauliflower that employs a different method of cooling, where product is cooled in a facility that is equipped with forced air tunnels.
To review the details of the case study, click here.