Allpax Products, a division of Pro Mach, shipped the first production Shaka retort licensed in the United States to a major food manufacturer. The Shaka process applies back and forth agitation during the retort process to sterilize food faster through improved thermal transfer ó up to 90 percent faster depending on the package and food. Faster processing through Shaka technology improves the taste, texture, appearance, and nutritional quality of shelf-stable food.
Allpax is one of only two retort manufacturers in the world and the only one in the U.S. licensed from UK-based Zinetec to manufacture and sell Shaka technology. While Allpax has sold multiple laboratory retorts with Shaka capabilities, the present unit is the first production model sold in the U.S.
"Our first customer for a production Shaka can now achieve first-to-market advantage because of the taste and appearance of its line of products,î said Greg Jacob, vice president and general manager, Allpax. "I have no doubt other early adopters will install Shaka retorts and that within a decade food processing engineers will all be wondering why they didn't adopt this technology sooner.
Allpax's laboratory work and the work of others showed that rapid agitation during sterilization reduces the thermal burden on a number of different types of shelf-stable food and results in higher overall quality and greater productivity through shorter cycle time. In many instances the food is indistinguishable in terms of color and taste from that prepared either on a stove as a home cooked meal, or aseptically.
Any type of food thin enough to move within the container when agitated will sterilize quickly under the Shaka process. Soups, sauces, ready meals, dips, spreads, baby food, pet foods, and more are all candidates. A Shaka overpressure retort equipped with a suitable retort basket for the package will sterilize cans, pouches, cartons, glass jars and bottles, small foodservice containers, and plastic cups, trays, and bottles. The Allpax 1300 production Shaka retort has a 52-inch diameter and holds a single basket. Because processing times can be reduced by as much as 90 percent, the relatively small Shaka retort can potentially match or exceed the capacity of multi-basket retorts. Baskets can be loaded and unloaded by one operator. Furthermore, shorter cycle times mean lower energy consumption as compared to larger retorts.