African tea processing industry seeks sustainability and efficiency improvements with DCO Systems
Black tea processing is energy extensive. Volatility in world oil prices led to many factories switching from oil to biomass (especially wood) to fulfil their steam generation requirements. While this led to a reduction in fossil fuel costs, factories face new pressures. Costs, environmental impact and sustainability of their fuel sources are of concern. The need to identify areas of waste and improve efficiency is more important than ever.
East Africa (especially Kenya) is one of the leading producers of black tea in the world.Â In the meantime, world tea consumption is predicted to reach 3.3 million tonnes in 2021. As a result, production continues to increase and yet the need to improve sustainability rises with it.
DCO Systems has implemented our sensing devices and customised monitoring systems throughout the five main stages of tea processing (Withering, CTC, Fermentation, Drying and Sorting). We provide turnkey solutions, developed with tea processors, that optimise production and raise quality standards.Â Â
A typical, medium sized, tea processing factory may require upwardsÂ of half a megawatt of electrical power when operating at full capacity and require the generation of more than 6,000kg of steam per hour.Â Â
The savings from optimisation of energy consumption in this environment are considerable both in terms of cost savings and in respect of reduced emissions. High rates of return on investment (ROI) are possible through considered and measured optimisations.Â