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October 15, 2010
For immediate release

Charlottetown Metal Products tests innovative product with assistance from the Pilot Fund and Food Technology Centre

BioFoodTech

Through the assistance of the Innovation PEI Pilot Fund, Charlottetown Metal Products has completed initial testing of their prototype high-pressure steam food processor.

With funding from the Pilot Fund, Charlottetown Metal Products (CMP) partnered with the Food Technology Centre (FTC) to conduct processing trials using their steam processor prototype. Different food commodities were evaluated by comparing yields and product qualities of the processed material against those processed by conventional means.

“The purpose of the Pilot Fund is to provide the seed capital our companies need to prove the viability of their products and test high-risk ideas,” says Minister Allan Campbell, Department of Innovation and Advanced Learning. “I am pleased to see positive results coming from this program and that our local companies are continuing to develop highly innovative products. Charlottetown Metal Products has an excellent track record in designing food processing equipment and I hope they will have continued success with their steam processor.”

The FTC tested a variety of fruits, vegetables and seafood to assess the performance and suitability of the processor for different food types. The types of processing procedures included in these tests were peeling, blanching and cooking shellfish, and canning seafood meat. The tests concluded that the prototype steam processor displayed clear advantages in peeling fruits and vegetables, such as potatoes and apples, as well as in cooking various seafood including shrimp and mussels.

CMP has been designing and manufacturing stainless steel food and seafood processing equipment for the past 50 years. CMP has an established worldwide and Canadian customer base consisting of many dominant players in the food and seafood processing industries including Cavendish Farms, McCain Foods, Maple Leaf and Ocean Choice.

“With the help of Innovation PEI and the Food Technology Centre, we were able to conduct early stage, third party testing on our steam processor and obtain the data we needed to move to commercial scale production,” said Steve Kelley, President of Charlottetown Metal Products. “Food processing equipment is forever evolving and consumers are becoming more aware of and concerned with the procedures used to process the food they eat. Support from the Pilot Fund really helped us move our product to the next stage of development and determine our target market.”

Charlottetown Metal Products is now reviewing the results collected by the Food Technology Centre and is working to attain the funding they need to commercialize the production of this prototype. There is still additional testing on the steam processor that needs to be completed but CMP hopes it will lead to further refinements and greater efficiency for their product.

The Pilot and Discovery Fund recently announced its third call for applications. For more information about this program or other programs offered by Innovation PEI, visit www.innovationpei.com.

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Media Contact: Ron Ryder