What are you crafting these days? Cider? Non-alcoholic beer? THC/CBD drinks? Something else? Anyone passionate about creating beverages spends time working out the perfect recipe in the hopes that your product is something special. So when you plan to distribute your product, we know it is important that it tastes the same when the customer gets it as when it left your facility.
The good news is that you can give your products a long shelf life and ensure they taste as fresh as the day you packed them by using flash pasteurization. And when your customers pour a glass of your delicious beverage, they are going to enjoy it just the way you intended.
What is Flash Pasteurization?
There are two main types of pasteurization in the beverage industry: tunnel and flash. Tunnel pasteurization is the process of heating packaged beverages to high temperatures. It is used in large commercial facilities and works with bottles and cans. It isn’t a good choice for cartons or PET bottles. Additionally, it is believed by some that tunnel pasteurizers can cause flavor inconsistencies in the final product.
Flash pasteurization on the other hand is a form of HTST pasteurization that quickly heats then cools the liquid and therefore reduces the microorganism count to acceptable levels before it is packaged in glass or PET bottles, cans, or cartons. Of the two, we recommend flash pasteurization for growing beverage products. Here are five reasons why.
5 Benefits of Flash Pasteurization
1. Extend the shelf life of your product
The longer your product stays delicious, the farther you can ship it and the more customers you can reach. While it’s on the road and in warehouses, you don’t have control of the storage environment.
When looking to increase your distribution foot footprint, pasteurization is required by most retail outlets. No one wants exploding cans or funked products. To get that shelf life flash pasteurization is an economical choice.
2. Protect the flavor of your beverage
Flash pasteurizers let you keep the amazing flavors and textures of your drinks, and at the same time, make it safe for storage and retail shelves. It’s a win-win! There is no discernible difference in taste between non-pasteurized beverages and those that have been pasteurized. Your customers will taste the quality of your products just as you intended.
3. Reduces the need for preservatives
Food preservatives are often man-made chemicals that keep foods from going bad. Today’s consumers demand food and beverages to have a long shelf life while also being as “natural” and “pure” as possible. Flash pasteurization allows you to work with these two competing needs and still get the shelf life and flavor stability.
4. Flexibility for your floor space
If your facility is tight on space, a flash pasteurizer is your answer! Tunnel pasteurizers are quite large, often running around 100 feet from end to end. Flash equipment, by comparison, is much smaller.
For a machine that can process 10BBL/hr, you only need a 4’x8’ space. If you want more capacity, an 80BBL/hr machine takes up just 5’x10’. When space is at a premium, a flash pasteurizer is the way to go because it allows you the most flexibility to work within the footprint of your existing facility.
5. A budget-friendly option
Flash pasteurization is an economical investment. The price of the machine itself can be up to 3x lower than that of a tunnel pasteurizer. The smaller size means that transportation costs are reduced. It also installs in just a couple of days which keeps the labor cost down.
Is a flash pasteurizer worth the investment?
Pasteurization has become an essential part of beverage production and distribution. For some products, like dairy, it has even become a requirement. Flash pasteurizers are significantly less expensive than tunnel pasteurizers.
The price of our flash pasteurizers typically depends on the size, but they’re always affordable. In return for that investment, you get the five benefits listed here which leads to greater distribution and more opportunity in retail stores for you. Depending on your specific product and its market pricing, you can usually recoup the cost of your investment quickly.
At Shelf Life Systems, we have decades of experience in the flash pasteurization business. We’re known for our work with the beer brewing industry, but we’ve got a solution that will work for just about any beverage company.
If you have further questions, we invite you to check out our website. Here you’ll learn even more about the ins and outs of flash pasteurization. It’s information that will help you figure out your next steps.