Tammy Phillips, President and VP of Finance
Supermarkets and the food processing industry traditionally relied on ice cubes to keep food products safe and blemish free. However, ice products ruined both the aesthetics and quality of food items because of their water content and poor surface area of contact. With heightened importance on food safety and the USDA regulations on temperature, the effectiveness of plain ice blocks or cubes are under scrutiny and a better solution is found in the use of ice flakes instead. As a result the majority of the food industry today relies on flake ice machines for their food presentation and preservation needs. Although effective and compliant with today’s food and safety regulations, most flake ice machines have become cumbersome due to their higher energy consumption and operating costs, which are difficult to manage in the long run.
Against this backdrop, Chicago-based Howe Corp has set the benchmark in the refrigeration industry with its durable and reliable flake ice machines. Supporting 1,000 to 20,000 lbs daily production on a daily basis, Howe products can seamlessly address the demands of diverse industry verticals. “We have been doing this for more than 100 years and have equipment in over 100 countries. Our focus has been on offering the coldest ice. Also, being sub-cooled, HoweIce® is a great benefit for a retailer to retain the freshness of perishable food items and for food processors to ensure the integrity of a recipe where ice is often used as ingredient,” says Tammy Phillips, President and VP of Finance at Howe.
With superior cooling qualities, Howe ice flakes help maintain a proper emulsion temperature and provide maximum cooling surface areas.
With an industry leading energy star rating, Howe’s ice machines seamlessly recycle unused water and ensuring zero wastage, all while reducing the concern over massive energy consumption.
These two features make the Howe equipment eco-friendly while saving huge expenses for its clients. “For retail supermarkets and processing facilities, the biggest concerns are energy, water, labor, and maintenance, and we’re able to help them overcome these hurdles with our cutting-edge and highly efficient products,” Tammy comments. Additionally, unlike other ice products these flat flakes do not contain sharp edges, which ensure food quality.
Tammy says, “Many of our competitors assemble and sell someone else’s product. Unlike them, Howe manufactures our own product with skilled craftsman with many certifications averaging 25+ years experience, and this is why we have maintained such a long-standing quality and reputation in the global market.” Most importantly, to serve clients in the best possible way, Howe team works in liaison with refrigeration contractors and supervises the entire installation process. The company also offers training for in-house maintenance of the machines to ensure self sufficiency and autonomy.
For retail supermarkets and processing facilities the biggest concerns are energy, water, labor, and maintenance and we're able to help them overcome these hurdles with our cutting-edge and highly efficient products
With their unique approach, Howe has carved itself a niche in the food production and processing space. Striding ahead, the company has plans to grow both domestically and globally with a focus on the South, Central American, Mexican, and Canadian markets. Currently, the company is working on the engineering side to stay ahead of the curve on refrigerants and energy efficiency and are also looking to introduce IoT-enabled electronic control panels for their complete line of Rapid Freeze® Flake Ice Machines. This will help meet the need for food processing plants to leverage real time data, ensuring equipment reliability, energy efficiency, and optimal operational performance for facility and asset management. Catch up with Howe at the International Production & Processing Expo (IPPE) at the end of January and several other trade shows listed on their website.
“We understood the importance of keeping products fresh as well as energy and water conservation long before it was a topic. Our goal is to continue to offer quality ice machines compatible with many refrigerants like CO2, Ammonia, and Low GWP to address the diverse demands of the food industry and we will keep on doing this for another 100 years,” Tammy concludes.