Friday, September 1, 2022 – Richmond, BC – Beatrice Schreiber, the President of the German Canadian Business Association (GCBA), was given a tour of GEA Frozen Food (https://www.gea.com/en/index.jsp) by the Head of the Business Unit Anne-Laure Brault. I tagged along to take pictures and get an idea of what GEA had to offer. It turns out that GEA designs and manufacturs freezers for food processing applications. Another name they go by is GEA Refrigeration Canada Inc.
GEA (https://www.gea.de/) is one of the world’s largest suppliers of systems and components to the food, beverage and pharmaceutical industries. The international technology group, founded in 1881, focuses on machinery and plants, as well as advanced process technology, components and comprehensive services.
With more than 18,000 employees working across five divisions and 62 countries, the group generated revenues of more than EUR 4.7 billion in fiscal year 2021. GEA plants, processes, components and services enhance the efficiency and sustainability of production processes across the globe.
They also contribute significantly to the reduction of CO2 emissions, plastic usage and food waste. In doing so, GEA makes a key contribution toward a sustainable future, in line with the company’s purpose: “Engineering for a better world”.
Some companies that belong to GEA today are:
Aerofreeze, Aeromatic-Fielder, Aquarius, Aseptomag, Atlas, Avapac, AWP, Barr-Rosin, Belam, Bischoff, Bowen, Breconcherry, Huppmann, Brouwers, CFS, Colby, Comas, Courtoy, Collette, CMT, Diessel, Dixie Union, Elba, Eurotek, Exergy, FES, FIL, Goedhart, Grasso, Grenco, Hilge, Houle, Intec, Ilka Mafa, Imaforni, Kestner, Koppens, Krämer + Grebe, Laguilharre, Liquid Processing, Lyophil, Matal, Messo, Milfos, Mullerup, Niro, Niro Soavi, Niro PT, Norbco, Nu-Con, Pavan, Pharma Systems, Procomac, Scami, Scanio, Scan-Vibro, Surge, Sterner, TDS, Technofrigo, Tiromat, Tuchenhagen, VIPOLL, Westfalia Landtechnik, Westfalia Separator, WestfaliaSurge, Wiegand, Wilarus, Wolfking.
Today, EA is active in the food, beverage, chemical, pharma, dairy processing, dairy farming and marine industries. Their portfolio includes machinery and plants as well as advanced process technology, components and comprehensive services. They have been in the freezing or refrigeration industry in Canada since 1979 and employ over 150 people.
What surprised me is that there were so many different kinds of freezers – spiral freezers designed for easy cleaning and access, tunnel freezers with various belt designs for many different products (meat, poultry, dairy, seafood, fruits/veg, ready meals, convenience food, baked goods), impingement freezers that feature an air-jet technology that minimizes dehydration loss while speeding up impingement freezing and some freezers as big as an apartment building.
GEA has more than 35 years experience in the “food freezing industry” and has refined the art of specialized and customized refrigeration. They also work hard to provide machines that offer the ultimate in food safety and prevent foodborne pathogens and bacteria make their way from the farm or facility to a consumer’s plate. This can easily happen through moisture.
GEA has more than 1000 chillers and freezers installed worldwide and has a huge database available on the products they have handled successfully in the past. They also have a state-of-the-art test lab that customers often visit, bringing product prototypes to carry out tests to measure freezing and retention times. They also study airflow and temperature to determine how big the machines needs to be. In some cases, that is very big!
History of GEA
In 1881, Wilhelm Merton, Leo Ellinger & Zacharias Hochschild found Metallgesellschaft Aktiengesellschaft (MG), a joint stock metals trading company, Frankfurt am Main.
In 1971, after the tumultous years of World War I and II, All MG businesses were organized into five divisions: metals processing, plant construction, chemicals, transport and communications with centralized function covering: finance, staff & administration and technology
In 2005/2006, GEA AG merges with parent company mg technologies ag; mg technologies ag then renamed GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft; Huppmann acquisition; headquarter moves from Frankfurt to Bochum. In 2011, GEA group structure further streamlined and centralized; headquarter moves from Bochum to Düsseldorf; company purpose launched: “Engineering for a better world.”
If you would like to join the German Canadian Business Association on a tour of the facility and plant in November, please let us know! You can send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also visit GEA online: https://www.gea.com/en/index.jsp
See you there!
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