Mike Pritt, Operations Manager
According to a recent report by USA TODAY, a large food processor was tremendously impacted by a massive recall of approximately 9 million pounds of frozen, fully cooked chicken products due to possible listeria contamination. Such incidents are providing food processors with the much-needed impetus for a resonant call to action. Now more than ever, hygienic food processing equipment is of paramount importance when it comes to ensuring food safety. Hygienic equipment customized for food processing applications can not only help mitigate the risk of product recalls, food waste, and costly downtimes but also prevent bacteria harborage. With this in mind, Ridgway-based Advanced Food Equipment (AFE) is leading the way in providing highly hygienic, durable, and efficient freezing and cooling, individual quick freezing (IQF), and processing solutions since 1990. AFE utilizes the most efficient mechanical refrigeration system for freezing all types of food products. “We produce state-of-the-art equipment that meets the hygiene needs of our customers,” says Mike Pritt, Operations Manager at Advanced Food Equipment. The company caters to a wide range of food industries, including beef, pork, and poultry, baked goods, pizza and pasta, seafood, and more.
AFE’s industrial freezers—spiral freezers, tunnel freezers, contact belt freezers, and more—come with fully welded stainless steel enclosures.
One of the biggest selling points for the company is that it provides 10-year, industry-leading warranties on these enclosure systems and drums. Unlike its competitors, the company produces freezers with a modular design that facilitates quicker installations. Besides, AFE takes pride in the fact that all its machines have secured highest grades for hygiene by agencies such as the American Meat Institute.
AFE custom designs its solutions to meet the unique production needs of customers. “We don’t just make a specific machine and try to force it to work for the customer. By taking into account space and other constraints, we tailor a machine as per customer needs,” comments Pritt.
We produce state-of-the-art equipment that meets the hygiene needs of our customers
AFE leverages the latest technology and design methods to manufacture its cooling/freezing applications. AFE’s equipment manufacturing plant is based in the Netherlands, where the company carries out the construction, fabrication, and engineering of its industrial freezers.
To further expound on the robust capabilities of AFE, Pritt recalls the success story of one of its clients, a pizzeria. The client was looking to make plant efficiency upgrades, including the addition of a new spiral freezing system for freezing fully assembled pizzas. To this end, AFE built a modular three-piece machine and installed it in just 12 days of the engagement.
At the core of AFE is its talented team with more than 150 years of combined experience. Under the hood of the company’s excellence is the unparalleled customer service it delivers to clients. AFE ensures that each of its customers gets the attention they deserve—one of the strongest suits of the company driving its success. Backed by experienced and efficient technicians, AFE rebuilds, improves, or modifies any cooling systems or freezers deployed by clients to optimize their performance. The company draws upon its maintenance abilities to deliver excellent services so that clients can make sure that their food processing equipment is performing at its best.
Moving forward, the company looks to leverage new technology and improve the way it manufactures its systems. “We are always learning lessons and improving our machines as we build them to simplify and make them more reliable and robust,” notes Pritt. “Even in the midst of challenging times of the pandemic, we never slowed down; we continued to travel, work with our customers, and build efficient machines.”