We had the chance to talk to Mr. Sushil Teotia, AVP, Bry-Air, who shared the journey of Bry-Air in providing global solutions for moisture removal and humidity control.He also talked about the benefits of dehumidification and provided his view on future trends and how to leverage technology to tackle the challenges in the food & beverage industry.

FMT: Bry-Air with over 58 years of experience is known worldwide for its expertise as a “solutions” company for moisture and humidity control. Can you give us a brief idea of the company’sgrowth, areas of operations, services offered, key milestones achieved etc.? 

Mr. Sushil Teotia: Bry-Air, a flagship company of the Pahwa Group, is a leader in dehumidification and quality air solutions. It provides global solutions for moisture removal, and humidity control, across varied industries and theproduct offerings are sought internationally for its dehumidification solutions. Helmed by Mr. Deepak Pahwa, Bry-Air is recognized across six continents, with thirteen manufacturing facilities located in India and across the globe., 9 R&D labs and 1500+ employees out of which over 750+ are engineers/ technicians. Our solutions are required across diverse industries and applications and our solutions varyfrom gas phase filtration, high-temperature waste heat recovery, plastic drying and conveying, and adsorption chillers. We are also the world’s fastest-growing adsorption technology Group, and Bry-Air Dry Room solutions are crucial for the production of lithium-ion batteries.

With more than 58 years of experience in dehumidification and environmental management systems, Pahwa Group has subsidiaries in China, Malaysia, Brazil, Nigeria, and Switzerland, as well as an associate plant in the USA. The company has installations in more than 85 countries, where it touches people’s lives around the clock with a presence in almost every industry, and is supported by a strong sales and service network spread across the globe. Since 2007, the Group has submitted 141 international patent applications for 15 new technologies, out of which 66 have already been granted or approved.

FMT: We understand that the technology used in the Bry-Air dehumidifiers is a first in the industry. What are some of your plans to maintain that leadership and extend it even further? 

Mr. Sushil Teotia: What distinguishes us from the competition is our capacity to customize our products to meet emerging market demands. Additionally, based on the experience we have gained over the period of 58 years in the industry, we have come to understand that adopting a problem-solving strategy is the best course of action for curating relevant products for the market. This enables us to provide our clients with the best solutions, aiding them to simultaneously scale up their businesses and productivity. As a result, we place a lot of emphasis on in-depth R&D, testing, labs, and patents in order to develop a thorough understanding and establish ourselves as subject-matter experts. 

On similar lines, we focus a lot on the curation of innovative technology that is well supported by active R&D in order to strengthen our foothold in the global market. With the best technology and products available from top international brands competing in the global market, it is even more crucial to break free from the clutter with the help of distinctive offerings. Therefore, thorough research comes to our benefit in offering cutting-edge products with the surety of adding value to the client’s business. Additionally, over the years in the industry, we have mastered the art of supply chain management, enabling us to export goods outside India in the shortest lead time with the help of the latest technology. Along with this, the Group is already working on the Carbon Capture technology and Air Water Generator (AWG) concept. Where carbon capture aids in arresting global warming by reducing industrial and thermal carbon emissions, our breakthrough concept of AWG aims at mitigating the water scarcity problem across the globe. 

Keeping in mind the F&B industry, we have our BBS series for the food industry that aids the sector in staying ahead of the technological curve. These energy-efficient desiccant dehumidifiershave patented technology, can be remotely monitored and controlled and have certain specific algorithms, such as VFDs (Variable Frequency Drive), which modify the parameters in real-time to provide higher energy efficiency.

FMT: What are the benefits of dehumidification? Which food & beverage industries need dehumidification? 

Mr. Sushil Teotia: Dehumidification plays a very critical role in the food & beverage industry as in the presence of moisture food tends to undergo microbial spoilage, oxidation and cause the breakdown of physical structure. Employing dehumidification solutions helps in preserving the food for an indefinite period of time by inhibiting microbial growth. It improves the shelf life and palatability of the food by retaining the taste and appearance of the original food. 

Dehumidification as a technology is crucial for all food and beverage industries. Starting from your breakfast cereals to your snack foods, hot tea & instant coffees to your desserts whatever we consume throughout the day all require moisture control to retain the freshness and taste. Some of the best names in the food industry, the global food conglomerates and national/ regional food brands/ companies are all using Bry-Air desiccant dehumidifiers during their processing processes. But as India is emerging as a significant exporter of high-end food products namely, mushrooms, apples, mangoes, cherries, broccoli, etc. there is a high demand for efficient dehumidifiers for such items during processing and storage. At the same time, the country is emerging as a global seafood hub for which the seafood industry is one such sector that requires dehumidification solutions for keeping the quality intact for a significantly long time. Similarly, given to online food purchasing these days has given rise to a surge in demand for meat and frozen food such as prawns, lobsters, peas, corn, etc. which in turn need dehumidification in cold stores as well.

FMT: What are the challenges this sector is currently facing and how can the scenario be improved? 

Mr. Sushil Teotia: The major challenge of the sector is preserving the quality of the food throughout the shelf life of the product. As consumers these days are quite aware and seek food that is fresh where flavour, aroma and colour is kept intact. Moisture being a major deterrent to the food industry, for instance, confectionery items that are high in sugar such as chocolates, candies, chewing gums, etc. have the tendency to absorb moisture from the atmosphere and become sticky at the same time. The moisture is responsible for the loss of lustre and gloss of the product causing sugar bloom and change in flavour.   

Hence, to curb the moisture menace, installing dehumidifiers can help regulate the temperature and humidity within the narrow bracket throughout the drying, storage, production, processing, and packaging of food. It minimizes the chances of food rejection, malfunctioning, and inconsistency of processes, condensation problems, fungal or mold growth. In turn, it improves the shelf-life of the products while adhering to the safety and quality of the food.

FMT: Which global geographies do you see as the most significant, from your perspective, in the coming years? 

Mr. Sushil Teotia: As stated above, over the years in the industry, we have a presence in more than 85 countries, with subsidiaries in China, Malaysia, Brazil, Nigeria, and Switzerland, as well as an associate plant in the USA. Providing products to a wide range of food industry entailing confectionery, snack food, sweets, dairy, health food, powder food, spices, frozen food, beverages like the instant coffee mix, tea, etc. it is seen that quality food is sought globally with consumers prioritizing the shelf life and quality &taste of food a lot in the recent years.  

FMT: How has the functioning of your company changed post-pandemic and how are you navigating the post-pandemic world? Has that changed the way you offer your services? 

Mr. Sushil Teotia: Abiding by the philosophy of ‘Innovation is Life,’ Pahwa Group has always been the frontrunner in providing futuristic solutions to improve the efficiency of the clients. Being a leader in the industry, we had the vision to foresee the upcoming trends in the sector that helped us to always stay ahead of the technology curve. Even before COVID had come to the scene, we had undergone digital transformation well in advance and continued to adapt and innovate, given our resolve to add value to our clients. Under the leadership of Deepak Pahwa, we were observant enough to gauge Industry 4.0 coming a long time ago and streamlined our machinery and processes accordingly.