Pasteurisation is fast, effective, efficient, safe and environmentally friendly. The ever-increasing competitiveness and drive for excellence within the horticultural industry dictates that all production systems must deliver efficient and effective processes.
At the end of the day rapid growing healthy plants deliver the biggest profit.
C-Mac offers a wide variety of horticultural solutions. In particular C-Mac manufactures high quality pasteurisation/sterilisation trailers for the pasteurisation of potting media, tools, pots and propagating trays etc.
C-Mac´s Pasteurisation/Sterilisation trailers use a mixture of steam and air along with an energy efficient air recycling system. For pasteurisation the required temperature of between 60°C and 70°C is achieved with a standard boiler (30 – 50kW). For higher temperatures please consult C-Mac.
Generally the time needed to raise the media to temperature is half an hour but this can vary depending on the media and the boiler size. Treatment time then takes an additional half an hour depending on the application.
Steam generated by an electric boiler is injected into a fan unit which delivers a steam/air mixture to the under carriage of the trailer. This steam/air mixture is then distributed to the contents of the trailer through a stainless steel perforated sheet. The air within the trailer is then recycled back to the fan unit.
The cool down process is achieved by running the fan with the canopy left on and generally takes between fifteen minutes and half an hour.
Once this process is completed the trailer can be disconnected from the boiler and easily manoeuvred into position (for example a potting shed). Lowering the fold-down sides allows for potting directly from the trailer. Alternatively if the trailer has a tipping mechanism, it can be maneuvered to a hopper and conveyor system.
The best way to reduce lag time is to run multiple trailers in tandem so that as one is being potted from another is being treated. Only the one boiler and fan is required!
Some of the main pathogens of concern within the Australian nursery environment include Pythium, Phytophthora and Chalara. All of these fungi can be successfully controlled using steam/air pasteurisation at a temperature of 60°C for 30 minutes.
Pasteurisation can be considered as one of the most effective methods of disease control as it actually kills harmful pathogens rather than just suppress them like many chemical treatments.
Some of the common sources of disease pathogens include soils and river sand, but were you aware peat moss is also a potential source of harmful plant pathogens?
Knowing many nurseries rely on a river sand and peat moss mix for their propagation, pasteurisation is a method whereby growers can guarantee their infant plants have the benefit of starting in disease free media. Nurseries that have already adopted this method have remarked that there is a definite improvement in plants grown in pasteurised media as opposed to non-pateurised media.
C-Mac has undertaken research into the effectiveness and benefits of steam pasteurisation and has a number of pasteurisation solutions that can be specially customised to suit your individual requirements.
As C-Mac is the manufacturer, different sizes and designs can be manufactured to suit your application. Units can be made in:
On the right hand side there is an example of a small 200 litre Mobile Pasteurisation Unit based on the same priciples as the large 750 and 1,000 cublic litre sterilising and pasteurisation units