Poindexter Nut Company Napasol Pasteurization Helps Walnut Growers Comply with Produce Safety Rule

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Starting with the 2017 crop, Poindexter Nut will be pasteurizing 100% of all the walnuts it ships in North America thanks to the increased capacity of its new high throughput Napasol line. With this strategy, the company’s growers will benefit from an exemption to the Produced Safety Rule because the validated pasteurization process provides the microbiological kill step required as a preventative control.

Poindexter nut

Poindexter Nut Company

The Produce Safety Rule exemption that our growers benefit from, with our capacity to pasteurize the walnuts, is a significant advantage that we offer.

The Poindexter Nut Company has been pasteurizing walnuts to provide top-level food safety to its customers since its first investment in a Napasol pasteurizer in 2010. Poindexter has been able to supply safe walnuts, which, thanks to the dry saturated steam process of Napasol, retain all the natural raw qualities of this delicate nut. With increased demand for pasteurized walnuts, Poindexter invested in a second high capacity pasteurization line and a purpose built facility that went into operation in December 2016. The company’s objective for the 2017 crop, to pasteurize 100% of the nuts it ships in North America, will facilitate produce safety rule compliance for its growers.

The Food Safety Modernization Act of 2011 imposes rules to minimize the risk of microorganisms of public health significance on produce. The Produce Safety Rule, which went into effect January 26 2016, provides farmers with an exemption if the produce is intended for further processing subjecting it to a validated kill step treatment. The Napasol pasteurizer provides a validate kill step and meets the preventative control requirements for microbiological hazards on walnuts.

Poindexter provides its growers the advantage of this pasteurization step as part of the services offered by the company. “The Produce Safety Rule exemption that our growers benefit from, with our capacity to pasteurize the walnuts, is a significant advantage that we offer,” says Mike Poindexter owner and CEO of the company, adding, “We anticipate a large demand for pasteurization from the growers and have the capacity to handle it."

Poindexter’s strategy has always been to do provide top-level food safety to its customers and the new investment in a larger pasteurization reinforces that objective: to have the safest product on the market and to be the leader in the industry. A large crop is anticipated in September, close to the same size as in 2016, with a good quality because of adequate rain. Now that Poindexter is running a second larger pasteurization unit, the company has the extra capacity to handle all of its future growth.

Poindexter Nut Company is located in Selma CA where it processes over 55 million pounds of walnuts yearly, exports to 56 countries, and has a staff of more than 400 employees seasonally. The added pasteurization capacity, which offers an exemption from the Produce Safety Rule, will allow Poindexter to appeal to more growers and consolidate its leadership position in the walnut industry.

Napasol North America LLC of Pasadena, CA, offers a range of equipment for pasteurizing nuts, seeds, herbs, spices and other low moisture foods. With the increasing number of units operating on the west coast, Napasol has established itself as the market leader in the pasteurization of nuts.

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Mike Poindexter

Dr. Cameon Ivarsson
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