GEA to Build the Largest Infant Formula Plant in China

01-02-2019
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The Pretreatment area of Junlebao factory. (Photo GEA/Junlebao)

In September 2018, GEA secured an order from the Shijiazhuang Junlebao Dairy Co. Ltd. in China to supply the country’s largest spray dryer for the manufacture of infant milk formula (IMF), with a planned production capacity of six tons per hour. The project has already kicked-off, with commercial production scheduled in the second quarter of 2020.

Founded in 1995, Junlebao achieved sustained and rapid growth over the years and today is the largest dairy processing company in the Hebei Province and the fourth largest dairy processing company in China. Well known for its liquid milk products, e.g. yogurt, lactobacillus beverages and UHT milk, it entered the infant formula milk powder market in 2017. In 2016, GEA provided already the whole production line technology and plant for infant formula milk powder for the Junlebao factory located in Junyuan.

The new plant, which is being built adjacent to the one completed in 2016, is a turnkey project for GEA, which includes supplying wet mixing, evaporation, drying and downstream powder handling. GEA is also responsible for the plant design, project execution, installation & commissioning and automation. Central to the plant will be the GEA MSD®-1600 multi-stage spray dryer, one of the world’s most advanced dryers – combining spray and fluid-bed drying in a three-stage drying process. The GEA MSD® drying tower produces formula powder products exactly to customer specifications and achieves an excellent agglomeration effect.

Junlebao chose GEA for this major project given the companies had worked together in 2016 on a project with a similar scope and were extremely satisfied with GEA’s performance on the project and subsequently with the capacity and operational stability of the plant and the world-class quality of the end products.

Leon Han, Head of Dairy Sales – Greater China at GEA, was delighted to announce the new order. “We’ve worked very closely with Junlebao for years and it has been a real pleasure to see the success the plant we built for the company two years ago has had,” he said. “The new plant will be the largest of its kind in China and we are delighted to be working with Junlebao again on this exciting project.”

“During the building of the 2016 plant we developed a very strong working relationship with GEA here in China. For this reason, GEA was the chosen partner for the new plant and we’re confident the project will be a success,” confirmed a Junlebao Dairy spokesperson.

GEA has many years of experience in IMF production, bringing together its expertise and market-leading technology to help dairy processors with the equipment of their production lines. GEA plants are trusted worldwide, achieving high product quality, maximum efficiency, productivity and environmental sustainability. On-going support is provided by GEA’s global network, including its in-house test facilities where customers can develop and refine processes and products ahead of full production, to help bring new products to market quickly and profitably.