GEA to build Asia’s largest milk production facility in India

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View of milk silos at AmulFed in Gandhinagar

During the first quarter of 2017, GEA in India received an order from the AmulFed Dairy (formerly Mother Dairy) in Gandhinagar, a unit of Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation (GCMMF). India’s leading milk and dairy product brand, Amul-Fed supplies about 5,000 skus in a combination of milk and dairy products across the country. The order for a new turnkey dairy plant for the production of 150 tons per day of skim milk powder and 120 tons per day of dairy whitener and baby food placed to Germany-based GEA is said to be for a ‘lower double-digit, million-Euro amount.’ The milk powder plant is scheduled to begin production in 2018.

When completed, the plant will be the largest skim milk powder and dairy whitener plant in Asia. The company markets its milk and milk products under the Amul brand and its baby milk powder under the name of Amul Spray.

The plant, to be installed on a turnkey basis by GEA, will process around 90,000 liters an hour of milk to produce multiple value-added products. AmulFed already has two milk powder plants in the same location supplied by GEA. Together they make AmulFed the largest plant in Asia at a single location. The new plant features GEA’s most advance safety system and uses hygienic architectural design principles to make it one of the most advanced GEA has built to date.

Interesting features to be included in the new AmulFed plant are the use of a Mechanical Vapor Re-compression (MVR) system from GEA within the evaporation plant. MVR continuously recycles energy by recompressing the vapor within the evaporator. This reduces energy costs and the CO2 footprint to minimize the environmental load.

A Reverse Osmosis (RO) polisher will be used to treat the milk condensate from the evaporation plant and recycle the water for reuse within the plant. This significantly reduces water usage and approaches zero liquid discharge concept.

The application of a GEA clarifying separator will be used to remove the entire life cycle of bacteria from the milk, thereby ensuring a supply of bacteria-free healthy milk throughout the process cycle. In building the new plant, the inclusion of GEA SANICIPTM bag filters in series with cyclones to collect powder fines will save the product and reduce emissions to the atmosphere.

A GEA sifter will provide a uniform distribution of the powder particles, thus offering a more homogenous final product. The new plant will also be equipped with powder packing and a conveying system from GEA.

Designed to operate in fully automated mode, the new plant includes powder production, conveying, storage, packing, final packed product conveying and a complete management information system. “We will provide AmulFed with a hygienically superior plant that will deliver peak performance,” said Abhay Chaudhari, GEA country managing director, India Cluster. “The AmulFed milk powder plant at Gandhinagar will not be just the largest in Asia but it will also be the most environment friendly,” he said.

GEA
GEA, a company that we met at interpack, is one of the largest suppliers for the food processing industry and a wide range of other industries that generated consolidated revenues of approximately Euro 4.5 billion in 2016. The international technology group focuses on process technology and components for sophisticated production processes in various end-user markets. The group generates around 70% of its revenue in the food and beverages sector that enjoys long-term sustainable growth. As of 31 March 2017, the company employed about 17,000 people worldwide.

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