System development for treating
leafy vegetables with Pulsed Electric Field

In partnership with DIL Engineering and ELO-Frost, Elea is developing the first industrial-scale PEF system explicitly designed to treat leafy plant materials. The project is founded by the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture 

The overall objective of the project is to adapt a PEF (Pulsed Electric Field) system for the industrial processing of leaf products, such as spinach, kale, grass and more.

In previous trials of processing kale through the use of a PEF lab scale system,  Elea has already been able to demonstrate, that the conventional blanching times could be reduced as well as freezing times. This is associated with a considerable saving of energy and a more efficient use of resources.

Processing kale with PEF, compared to exclusively thermal processes, allows for gentler treatment and therefore ensures the production of a higher-quality product. A successful application of an adapted PEF system in the processing line of kale can significantly contribute to the efficient use of resources as well as to healthy nutrition and the production of safe food.

First industrial-scale PEF system
explicitly to treat leafy plant materials

The innovative new belt design brings the benefits and opportunities of PEF (cost saving, improved quality, new product opportunities) to delicate and difficult-to-handle materials such as spinach, kale, grass and more.

Elea PEF Advantage B 1c prototype

The PEF Advantage B 1c (convert) system is a functional prototype that already has essential functional properties for processing leavy products. The prototype is based on a model already established on the market, the Elea PEF Advantage B1 mini. The two main components of this continuous PEF system are the pulse modulator and the treatment unit.

At the end of the project, the newly designed PEF Advantage B1c system will be integrated into the kale processing line at ELO-FROST in order to be able to define concrete components for a targeted series production of the system. Previous trials have already shown that adjustments to the specifications for the in-feed of the system are needed in order to realise the required industrial capacities of several tonnes of kale per hour. At the same time, a modification of the belt systems is necessary to ensure efficient conveyance of the kale or other leafy products without losses through the PEF system.

Project partner

Elea Technology GmbH
Dr.-Ing. Claudia Siemer
Tel.: 0173 431 1021

DIL Engineering GmbH
Clemens Hollah
Tel.: 05431 183 290

Associated partner

Henrik Witte
Tel: 04447 9691 600

Project funding