Allpax Products, powered by Pro Mach, said its Gentle Motion reciprocating retorts have been installed in a food plant in Europe.
The retorts are being used on shelf-stable soup products packed in flexible containers.
The reciprocating agitation process reduces processing time on average from 5-40% and consequently increases plant capacity.
The resultant reduced cook time improves a shelf-stable product’s taste, texture, and appearance.
The company says the Gentle Motion agitation is a high capacity retort process designed for pouches and bowls that are oriented horizontally in a retort rather than vertically as are cans, bottles, and jars.
The back-and-forth reciprocating motion of the retort baskets in a Gentle Motion retort produce waves of heat flowing longitudinally through the package.
This process is ideal for soups and sauces that have low-to-moderate viscosity and moderate-to-high liquid and particulate content.
Each retort can have up to six full-sized baskets and can be loaded and unloaded via an automated system.
Recently, Allpax researched the impact of Gentle Motion agitation on 15 foods packaged in various microwaveable pouches and bowls.
It documented reductions in processing time, capacity increases compared to static retort processing, and the overall subjective improvements to quality, including taste, texture, and appearance.
In those tests, sterilization time reduced from 14% to 59% over static retorts.
Food quality across the board improved.