Types of Fans Applied In The Food Industry
Industrial fans serve a variety of purposes in any production site or facility – including the food industry. In any food manufacturing facility, industrial fans are highly important in making sureseveral processes run smoothly – from processing, storage, cooling, drying, heating, to cooking, and many others.
Because of the variety of purposes an industrial fan offers, these industrial fans come in different forms, materials, and functions. These fans are meant to support specific tasks at certain stages of the food processing cycle.
It’s not just one kind of industrial fan needed to put up a food manufacturing facility – there are actually a handful that need to be installed. It’s important to know which kinds are needed and what purposes they serve. Doing so will help ensure a complete, smooth, efficient, and safe working food system from start to finish, both for the consumers as well as the employees working in the facility.
Right Materials For Fans in FoodFacilities
A food processing facility involves a complete system of machinery, with each equipment intended for a different function. But at the root of each type of fan is the same set of purposes: to maintain the quality of air within the facility, keeping it healthy and hygienic for everyone involved. It will also help inensuring that the final product made is of high quality and safety.
Even the material used for each fan is crucial; for food facilities, it must almost always be made of stainless steel. Stainless steel is the most hygienic option, since it can prevent molds and bacteria from forming. This makes cleaning and maintenance easier, and keeps your fans strong and durable for a longer time. Aluminum, polypropylene, and other non-corrosive materialsare also recommended.
Food facilities are notorious for breeding high humidity, dirt, and chemicals in the air and for operating for long hours. All of these could gravely affect the longevity of fans. If the wrong fan is used, maintenance will be more costly. In addition, there will be a greater frequency of needing replacements. This will definitely cost the food facility more money and time.
Benefits to Food Industry Employees
It’s also important to use the right fans for the welfare of the workers. Certain fans help provide a more comfortable working environment, expertly removing any heat or humidity residue from the food being processed. Not all industrial fans can do this, given the environment food workers are in.
There’s also an indirect effect of saving on labor costs. After all, investing in your employees’ comfort, well-being, mood, and productivity is known to leadto a more engaged and loyal workforce.
Simply put, investing in the correct types of fans (which are durable, reliable, and of high quality) can lower any company’s expenses for repair, replacement, maintenance, and workforce retention in the long run.
Kinds of Fans Used in the Food Industry
1. Drying fans
These centrifugal industrial fans may look like your typical electric fans with a round base and shape with 5-6 blades, built to spin and provide air. However, these drying fans provide a significant impact to the food industry. They reduce the water volume in food to completely dry it. By doing so, it prevents any molds or bacteria from forming on washed fruit, meats, seafood, and produce.
These fans do so by producing high-pressure air movement, quickening the dehydration process and making it more thorough. This is usually done after production, when water must be totally extracted from food items before being packaged and sent out for shipping.
2. Cooking fumes extraction fans
As the name suggests, these industrial fans are used to extract any cooking fumes or smoke from the facility, expelling it out of the facility. These fans are usually placed directly over ovens, stoves, or big furnaces that emit fire and smoke. They work similar to how rangehoods placed above the stove are used in home kitchens.
These fans are very important for workplace safety, as it removes any gas or reactive elements from the smoke/air, preventing any explosive incidents from within, as well as physiological inconveniences, like smoke in the eye, asthma, or toxic smells from the fumes.
These are also key in providing comfort to employees by lessening any hot air from the inside, thus lowering workplace temperature to a more comfortable one. They do this by circulating the air inside, exhausting any hot air and smoke.
3. Cooling fans
Cooling fans are for cooling food that have just been cookedand are still at a high heat. These foods need to be cooled before being handled, packaged, and shipped. They are usually placed above or at the end of conveyor belts carrying these items. Certain foods also need to be cooled before being transported and then stored in a separate refrigeration area. If they are still too hot, they might spoil in storage.
The fans that do this are usually high-pressure, centrifugal fans. They are manufactured to keep storage cold, keep everything at optimal temperature, and to control humidity. They distribute equal amounts of air to all sides of the products, providing even cooling.
4. Material handling fans
These high-pressure, centrifugal fans are in charge of bulk items that are conveyed from drop-off to pick-up point, providing all items on this journey with a clean, hygienic, supply of fresh air. They are built to handle specific goods such as flour, grains, sugar, cereal, and the like.
These fans also help in keeping workershealthy. This is because such goods, if inhaled, could pose as a respiratory hazard. Hence, these fans are considered a form of air purification system.
5. Packaging and storage
Last but not the least, these types of fans are crucial in the packaging process. They provide a vacuum of air for tight sealing of packages, containers, or bottles, as well as hygienic purposes. These are usually high-pressure fans that blow a strong flow of air into these packs before the food items are placed inside.
The fans chosen under this type will also depend on the amount of air needed for every item that’s being packaged. Some items may need a cooler condition, while some might need a drier one. Some might even need it hot, while others might need it refrigerated beforehand. Regardless, most food items are set at a regulated temperature and standard humidity for packaging, which these centrifugal fans provide.