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Food Techno Engineering: Sustainable freezing and refrigeration engineering for the food supply chain

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Article - March 11, 2024

FTE’s pioneering energy-efficient freezing and refrigeration technology allows food to be kept fresh for longer, reducing food waste.

Food Techno Engineering (FTE) provides freezers and cold equipment engineering for food processing plants and cold logistics distribution centers across Japan and globally. As a food factory specialist, its total services include layout and line design, manufacturing, delivery, installation and commissioning of equipment, as well as after-sales.

“By proposing energy-saving, manpower-saving and production line automation solutions, we provide solutions for customer sites and food processing plants,” says Kenji Noda, President of FTE. “Our engineering capability is to continue to create new answers for our customers through a synergy effect of people, ideas, and technology. We continue to move forward while constantly addressing global environmental issues and responding to changes in dietary habits and lifestyles.”

The FTE president highlights two facilities that demonstrate the company’s unique capabilities. The first is the FTE Laboratory, which is equipped with five types of freezers. The second is the FTE Academy, where industry, government and academia share and research new technologies to solve global environmental problems.

“At the laboratory is a test room where customers can visit and bring in goods and foodstuffs for freezing and chilling tests and carry out actual freezing tests. They can also confirm at site by collecting  data on temperature, freezing time and freezing quality of products. The lab is unique in the world and has been very well received by our customers. We have numerous companies visit us every week, sometimes several in one day,” says Mr. Noda.

The second is The FTE Academy. “Here we developed the industry’s first high-humidity refrigerator, which uses revolutionary technology that allows temperature and humidity to be controlled separately. By keeping the temperature close to 0°C and the humidity above 95%, it keeps fruit, vegetables and flower petals fresh and prevents them from drying out. This makes it possible to preserve fruit and vegetables for long periods and transport them over long distances while maintaining their seasonal taste. Many Japanese farmers and logistics companies have been waiting for a product with this feature, because this technology leads to solutions for social issues such as the manpower shortage in the field of Japanese logistics and the elimination of food waste,” explains Mr. Noda.

With food factories today suffering from rising energy costs, one of FTE’s biggest objectives going forward is to support its customers in reducing their energy consumption and carbon emissions. Its range of freezers aren’t just designed to be energy-efficient upon use, they are also manufactured using renewably generated electricity at its Techceed plant in Tokushima Prefecture.

“This new plant is equipped with solar panels, and the electricity generated by the panels is stored in storage batteries for use,” Mr. Noda adds.

Lastly, Mr. Noda also speaks passionately about the company’s 25-year anniversary (this year), while also looking toward the future: “We will continue to contribute to a better society through high-quality food products, ensuring safety and deliciousness through full utilization of our technology, which is aimed to be best and only one. To do so, we will continue to prioritize human resource development and training – overall, we will encourage young generations to think and act by themselves voluntarily.”

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