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Cold Room and Industrial Refrigeration

Understanding Indian food industry

The Indian sub-continent is one of the fastest growing economies in the world, which is currently striving to optimise the utilisation of its demographic dividend and its geographic expanse amidst the rising challenges of pollution and climate change.

Today, in terms of total farm output, India is the second largest in the world; it ranks first in the production of milk, jute, pulses. Over 58 per cent of the total workforce of India is either directly or indirectly dependent on agriculture and its allied sectors (fisheries, forestry, livestock, dairy, etc.) to sustain their livelihood. Agricultural sector accounts for 17.9 per cent of the nation’s GDP. There is immense opportunity here to improve sustain or capitalise from the returns of the sector, especially, if the demand and supply are matched with producers and consumers.

Over 40 per cent of India’s total agricultural produce gets lost in India after harvest during transit or due to inefficient handling or due to lack of an understanding of the demand cycles by the producers which to a large extent can be addressed through an efficient cold chain infrastructure. Presently, the country has a total installed capacity of 30.11 million metric tonnes (MT).

About 75 per cent of this capacity is utilised for the storage of potatoes while the remaining 25 per cent is being shared for the storage of other vegetables, fruits, processed food and pharmaceuticals. Of the existing cold storages, 36 per cent have a capacity below 1,000 MT. It is important to understand how is the existing infrastructure connected to markets through an efficient chain and the markets which are underserved where infrastructure needs to be established for us to truly get value out of these investments past and future.

Cold chain industry and its growing relevance

An efficient cold chain infrastructure has the ability to transform the way in which a farmer stores his produce. They ensure that the produce can be stored at optimum temperatures suitable for preservation that will increase their overall longevity. They can be used for a variety of perishable products such as grains, fruits, vegetables, meat, dairy etc. Through this, freshness of the produce can be maintained from the time that it is harvested till the time that the consumer buys the product from the local supermarket for consumption. Investing in such a technology can ensure that healthy and nutritious food is served from farm to fork.

A functional cold storage can rewrite the profitability aspect for the food producers. Since the loss is reduced, they can be assured that their hard work does not turn futile and that they are able to gain the monetary profits that they deserve. The system will also create greater awareness in the society about the value of fresh, healthy and nutritious food that is protected through means that do not affect the quality of the produce in any manner unlike the usage of preservatives and pesticides which is detrimental to the consumers.

We have seen the effectiveness of this in many pockets in India such as grape farmers in Nashik, Fishery exports from Andhra Pradesh, Banana farmers in Tamil Nadu, Kinnow from Himachal to name a few.

Danfoss powering the growth of India’s cold chain infrastructure

With innovation as the main focus at Danfoss, and backed by more than 80 years of experience in the global refrigeration business, Danfoss develops and supplies the right products for advanced, environmentally friendly cooling installations.

Danfoss Industrial Refrigeration solutions offer highly efficient and reliable refrigeration systems optimised for ammonia and other natural refrigerants. Additionally, the components are designed to provide the lowest total cost of ownership, while at the same time ensure near-zero downtime in food-processing plants, warehouse and storage facilities.

The other decisive criteria for the sector is compliance with hygiene and food safety regulations, but also energy and refrigerant regulations, maintenance and operating costs. These factors have an impact on all market players from OEMs to wholesalers, installers to shop owners.

Understanding this, Danfoss’ solutions fit the very diverse needs of the food service applications for restaurants, catering, canteens etc., specialty retail for butchers, bakeries, etc., process cooling in lab or medical, fruit ripening chambers, etc., convenience stores, petrol stations and pharmaceutical industry.

Refrigerant safety in industrial refrigeration

Environmental concerns and new regulations such as Kigali agreement and Montreal protocol are forcing scientists and refrigeration technicians to take a serious look at natural refrigerants like ammonia and carbon dioxide as a long-term alternative for refrigeration. Anyone involved in food preservation and industrial process plants already know ammonia as the refrigerant of choice due to its unmatched thermodynamic properties and are increasingly understanding that if used with the right safety standards and protocols in place it is the safest refrigerant.

Having passed the test of time over more than a century as one of the best choices, ammonia is now receiving attention in areas of application where it was unthinkable earlier. Danfoss is a leader in ammonia refrigeration components, including manual, mechanic and electric valves. The company is constantly working on developing components that enable safe and energy-efficient application of ammonia refrigeration.

In focus: Danfoss’ diverse product portfolio

The company’s extensive range of products includes condensing units, compressors, VLT drives, heat exchangers, controls, sensors and valves and system protectors. Danfoss’ condensing units provide high energy efficiency, reliability, food safety and assures low noise operation apart from using lower-GWP refrigerants that are environment friendly and help the country meet its targets under Montreal and Kigali protocols. The company’s Micro Channel Heat Exchangers (MCHE) assure of a reduction of refrigerant charges and optimised heat transfer in condensers. Apart from this, Danfoss’ compressors function is varying ranges of fixed speed and variable speed scrolls designed with high efficiency motors from ½ to 20HP.

The multi-faceted benefits of Danfoss’ solutions include reliable and sturdy solutions to preserve the cold chain and protect perishables in different climate types, technology and refrigerant options to maximise efficiencies, from applied to maintenance costs, unique application expertise and Application Development Center capabilities to reduce development time and compact and low sound level solutions for use even in residential areas.

Danfoss’ products cater to a wide range of components for industrial refrigeration and can therefore deliver all valves for a project reducing complexity and optimizing project deliveries.

Catering to the market needs – the Danfoss Way

Climate change regulations, new demands for energy efficiency, higher comfort level expectations, cold chain reliability, and pressure to reduce overall cost of ownership are driving the current developments and installations in a competitive marketplace. Through Danfoss, HVAC-R professionals including OEMs, installers, wholesalers, owners, and end users have access to the widest portfolio of user-friendly solutions available on the market.

For plant owners, choosing solutions from Danfoss is the safe and cost efficient choice for their refrigeration installation as it offers a number of advantages to improve competitiveness and target specific industries among others including excellent system performance, low risk of leakage and optimised components for a wide pressure range, low energy consumption, high product quality, catering to the strictest food safety requirements and reliable and safe operation in the daily work apart from providing a high ROI.

For contractors, Danfoss offers one of the widest selections of high-quality components as a one-stop-shop for turnkey solutions delivered by a global market leader that have been well-tested and are at the forefront of industrial refrigeration. With its reliable solutions, the maintenance process has been made easy with an added assurance of reduced installation time. Additionally, all required certificates, documentation and calculation tools are easily made available for use.

For OEMs, Danfoss offers the best solutions to sustain a profitable and long-term partnership with a close cooperation to meet current and future needs of the customers. Apart from unique and flexible valve solutions, Danfoss is also known for its tailor-made solutions for all applications including heat pumps and CO2 packs.