One of our clients, a leading high-pressure fittings supplier, recently selected Alleima HP 160 tubing for the successful food processing and cutting of baby carrots.

The background

Normally, producers will use conventional thermal processing sterilization. But it’s been linked to a reduction in the freshness and quality of products. This has led the industry to adopt a high-pressure processing method recently. It’s a popular technique because it helps retain the nutritional properties of food by avoiding heat use. This new process for food sterilization has now been adopted for baby carrots.

A fun fact: carrots are the most popular root vegetable sold in the United States.

Baby carrots were originally invented in 1986 when farmer Mike Yurosek wanted to find an alternative to discarding misshapen carrots. Yurosek and his team decided to cut unwanted carrots into perfectly shaped baby carrots using a potato peeler. The idea became so successful that it’s since been adapted and grown into the commercial use you see today.

High-pressure tubing that can withstand extreme conditions during sterilization must be used. Food is placed into a vessel with high-pressure intensifier pumps, which are pressured to approximately 6,000 bar or 87,000 psi. It can take several minutes to reach the desired pressure, which can cause fatigue cracking in the tubing.

When pressure moves slowly through the tubes it can create harmful effects, compromising the quality of products. There can be financial implications if the food fails to meet regulatory standards.

The solution

When using high-pressure tubing for extreme conditions it’s important to have a product that can meet these specific challenges.

We suggested Alleima® HP 160 to our customer. A high-strength nitrogen-alloyed austenitic stainless steel with high corrosion resistance. Not only that but, HP 160 can push ahead up to 12,000 bar. Pressure resistance is guaranteed by the very smooth internal diameter surface increasing the overall reliability of the piping system.

The result

We are fiercely devoted to giving our customers the best material technology. And this case was no exception. Alleima® HP 160 tubes increased the piping system’s reliability. By allowing the correct pressure to move through the tubes with no hardening, it eliminated fatigue cracking. When food like baby carrots is sterilized through pressure processing, it’s safe and has a longer shelf life. It retains the nutritional values that are lost in thermal food sterilization.