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Reliable by Design


Dual Cook System Solves Flexibility for Production Scenarios

 

This system (see video link) was designed to increase capacity and flexibility for processing sauces and soups for a commercial food manufacturer.

The Column Dumper feeds the ThermaBlendTM Cooker with recipe ingredients. The 200 gallon ThermaBlendTM with heat transfer jacket, cooks the product while being gently agitated by dual ribbons.

After the batch is cooked, it is released into a drop tank which is jacketed for maintaining temperature and includes an agitator for continued dispersion of particulates. The batches are then pumped to downstream packaging operations. 

The sanitary design platform allows safe and easy access for maintenance and sanitation.

For maximum flexibility, the system allows for two different batch processes or doubling batches to accommodate production demands.

Visit www.mepaco.net for more information!


New Mepaco Video Channel – grab the popcorn!

 

With so many videos and animations added to the website, we have created a video channel just for Mepaco systems and equipment.  Among the new videos are:


  • An animation of a New Mixing System for the Prepared Foods Industry
  • An EZL Pallet Lift Demonstration
  • A Plant Walk-Through of a Meat Processing Line
  • An Articulating Screw Elevator Demonstration and Animation

Visit the channel and check out the new videos!

 


Drain Plug Protector is a little innovation that solves big problems

The night shift has completed their work and the sanitation team begins flooding the process room with cleaning chemicals, water and spray to soak and sanitize every nook and cranny.  And what often gets blasted away? The drain plug often goes missing.  Sometimes the cleaning crew doesn’t even know it went down the drain.  Sometimes the production staff starting up the next shift also doesn’t know it is missing.

Many food processing people have a similar story, so Mepaco invented a tool-less self-containing plug that is impossible to lose and easy to appreciate.

Mepaco’s plug ejects far enough to release the waste, but is restrained against a solid welded restrictive barrier that holds the plug in line, without limiting performance, or enabling escape.  

Other plug designs don’t hold up to rigorous cleaning and aren’t designed to prevent the harboring of bacteria.  While sanitation teams want easy to clean solutions that will pass inspection, production wants efficiency with no loss of product.  Losing plugs are no longer a concern with these self-containing plugs.

 


Comparing Metal Finishes used in Sanitary Design Equipment

In the photo are samples that we provide to customers to show the different types of finishes available in the design and manufacturing of equipment for industries that require a high degree of sanitation.

From the left:

2B Finish: Has common corrosion resistance properties, heat resistant, smooth (not brushed) steel.  The RA (roughness average) is 36 to 15 depending on the gauge of the material.

#4 Finish:  Is Characterized by short, polished brushed lines and is suitable for caustic wash down procedures.  The RA is from 29 – 40 depending on the gauge of the material.

Pickle Passivation:  A treatment also referred to as descaling, pickle passivation removes the scale and leaves a matte finish that is free from contamination.  Apache’s tests have proven an increase in RA smoothness up to 25%, compared to measurements before the material was pickle passivated.

Bead Blast: Bead blasting utilizes material such as glass, ceramic beads to produce a non-directional, textured surface with a satin appearance and low reflectivity. The finish is not necessarily smooth, depending on the process and blasting medium. RA readings are typically greater than 45.

Electropolish:  Surface metal is dissolved, removing all embedded contaminants, which creates a smooth, mirror-like finish.  Apache’s tests have proven to increase smoothness up to 50%, compared to measurement before the material was electropolished.

For detailed information about these finishes and processes, download our white paper “Leveraging Stainless Steel Finishes on Sanitary Equipment”.

 


“This is What I Make” Video in the Mepaco group

 

The Apache Corporation and the Mepaco group work continuously in the manufacturing community to promote careers in manufacturing. In honor of Manufacturing Month, we are sharing a new video on the making of Mepaco stairs and platform.

A new video series, “This is What I Make”, features fabricators who have volunteered to put their work on video to educate youth and prospects how Apache’s equipment is made and the tasks involved in the process. In the video, Matt demonstrates reading engineering drawings, measuring to verify tolerances, welding and grinding in order to fabricate a stairs and platform that food plant customers use to maintain tall equipment at a safe level.

Apache is planning on making a video for each product segment to demonstrate the job duties in making our custom products.

These manufacturing career videos will be available on Mepaco’s website, social media and workforce partnering websites.

For more information and videos, visit www.mepaco.net/careers.

 


New Video Animation: A Demonstration of the Articulating Screw Elevator

 

The Mepaco group has expertise in manufacturing screw conveyor systems for many food industries and applications.  The articulating screw conveyor is part of the customizable product offering that includes screw feeders and surge loaders.

In the video, the articulating screw conveyor is animated to demonstrate:

  • Lowering and elevating capabilities for safe and efficient sanitation and maintenance
  • Pivoting capabilities that allow for versatile production possibilities

These articulating conveyors have been designed with different pivot configurations, CIP (clean-in-place) capabilities, pneumatically controlled safety grating and covers, and  electropolished food contact surfaces.

For more information, download Mepaco’s screw conveyor systems brochure.

 


Mepaco Dumper Equipment: New Options Improve Food Safety

 

Mepaco’s Pallet Retention System (PRS) is an option on Dumper equipment that reduces the risk of foreign matter like wood and nails from contaminating your food production process.

 

A manual or optional pneumatic clamp safely secures the combo throughout the dumping process. As the dump cycle begins, the pallet is immediately secured so once the combo reaches 90-deg, the combo can complete the dump cycle apart from the pallet.  In addition, a Liner Retention System (LRS) prevents the liner from separating from the combo and falling into the hopper.  Upon completion of the dump cycle, the dumper and frame are reunited and the carriage assembly returns back to the start-load position. 

 

This design limits the potential of foreign material from entering the product stream.  

 

The Pallet Retention System (PRS) and the Liner Retention System (LRS) are both available on the DP3000 Pivot Dumper and the HD3000 High Lift Dumpermodels.

 

Download the latest brochure on Dumpers for more information.

 


Our Blog Has Moved!
Open shipping box with the letters B L O G perched on packing peanuts

The MEPACO BLOG has moved to its new location on the Mepaco website.

Our blog is published a couple times per month. We keep the blog very brief, educational and informational. 

 Follow our blog on the sign-up to the right to receive updates on:

  •  New equipment products and updates
  •  Video demonstrations on equipment
  •  Video animations of systems and equipment
  •  Trade Show Schedules
  •  Safety Updates on Equipment
  •  Component Technology Updates
  •  New brochures
  •  New white papers

You Have Arrived at Mepaco's New Website and Blog
Pic of computer screen displaying the new Mepaco website home page

The Mepaco group has just released a new website design that provides users with intuitive access to products and industries. Simplified site navigation and enhanced search capability will make it easier for visitors to find information about our food processing systems and industry experience, including:

  • Blenders
  • Cookers
  • Grinders
  • Surge Feeders
  • Dumpers
  • Lifts
  • Conveyors
  • Integrated systems

Many videos and animations have been added to the website, as well as easy access to brochures and FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions).  The new website will also perform very well on mobile devices.

Type in your email on the right, to sign up for this blog!


 

 


Polymer Bearings: Mepaco’s Customers Showing Promising Results

With the sophisticated demands in food processing and production, safety and quality, every component within food equipment is critical. Any machinery with moving parts has friction and ‘wear’ issues, and to accommodate most equipment uses a standard bearing. But in applications where the standard bearings compromise food contact areas, Mepaco offers the polymer bearing.

Standard issue bearings are typically ball bearings, mounted in a painted cast iron housing. While the painted coatings are a sealant and deliver anti-corrosive benefits, rust and paint chips can still exist and find its way into the product path. Secondly, maintenance, disassembly, and replacement of bearings is very time consuming in a busy production setting. And lastly, if used above an open product path, grease may cause product contamination. For these reasons, steel ball bearings are best used in equipment and areas where they will not come in contact with food.

In food processing environments, producers should consider polymer bearings to mitigate food safety risks.

The polymer bearing has a moderate up front investment – more than steel bearings – but the Total Cost of Ownership is lower, because of fewer maintenance, safety and sanitation issues.

Mepaco’s polymer bearing is a solid, self-lubricating polymer that is absent of ball bearings. This ensures fewer parts, lowering the chance for breakage or malfunction. In place of the ball bearings, the polymer bearing includes a self lubricating insert, which eliminates the need for grease. That insert can also be replaced without needing to replace the entire housing, reducing the Total Cost of Ownership.

In recent Mepaco systems, the polymer bearing is showing much promise in new applications within traditional food processing environments. While not steel or cast iron in build, the polymer is ‘holding up’, proving to display the durability and efficiency in design.

Polymer technology is changing the face of many industries, and the food industry is no different. The advanced polymer bearings available in Mepaco products represent the promise of innovative components. And with a lower Total Cost of Ownership along with improved quality and efficiency, the smooth polymer bearing should be a reliable transition for all producers.

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