8 California Food Producer EDITION 2, 2017 California food processors are faced with unique challenges that come with operating in a state with complex environmental regulations. Enhanced emission standards for air pollutants (NOx , SOx, and particulate matter) and greenhouse gasses are forcing processors who operate plants with boiler systems for heating water, air, or food to retrofit or replace them. At the same time, utility providers like PG&E are incentivizing energy efficiency upgrades, and California’s emissions Cap-and-Trade program may offset processors’ costs for upfitting their plants with better heating technology. But focusing on optimizing boilers misses the larger opportunity available to food processors to achieve energy efficiency and reduce emissions. We have been able to refine and optimize boilers, but the basic science behind boiler-powered heating has not changed dating back to the era of locomotives. Our field testing of fluid milk processors’ steam systems showed they are only 20-30% efficient in turning intake energy into captured heat in their process, be it heating food, water or air. Boilers are a holdout of old technology in an age of innovation, and now California food producers are feeling the pressure to find a better solution. Emerging technology, like magnetic induction heating, can offer an energy efficient and emissions-free alternative to boilers in food processing plants. Continuous-flow magnetic induction heating was part of a NASA project to develop food strategies for Martian and lunar colonization. Magnetic induction heating is an all-electric technology that is virtually 100% efficient in converting electric energy directly into in-the-food heat. As a technology, continuous-flow induc- tion heating can provide food processors with energy efficient, highly controllable heating systems that can meet their needs for scale and operational effectiveness. The principals of magnetic induction heating are similar in many respects to the operation of an electric transformer. Alternating current is passed through an induction coil wrapped around a heat exchanger. All energy is induced into the heat exchanger where it is converted to heat. The metallic core is designed to optimize heat exchange; therefore, the coil/metallic core couplet serves both as heating source and as a heat exchanger. Flowing fluid, like sanitation water for a CIP system or food product like milk, juice or sauce, are heated as they pass through the heat exchanger. Since all the heat is generated directly within the flowing food stream, little heat is lost in thermal transport, unlike the case with steam transfer lines. Emission Standards: focusing on optimizing boilers misses the larger opportunity available to food processors to achieve energy efficiency and reduce emissions. We have been able to refine and optimize boilers, but the basic science behind boiler-powered heating has not changed dating back to the era of locomotives. Magnetic induction’s coil-and-core configuration allows unprecedented control over food heating.