Heinz Foodservice

Steam-Peeled Tomatoes


How Escalon Premier Brands reduces its impact on the environment

Escalon uses only natural, steam peeling to produce all of its tomato products – a process similar to home canning.

Other processors in the industry use chemical lye peeling to remove the skin from the tomatoes for production efficiencies. However, wastewater from lye peeling is detrimental to soil quality.1

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, tomato processors who use steam peeling reduce chemical contamination of water.2

Because the Escalon factory uses the clean and natural process of steam peeling, we are able to reduce our waste, re-use all the byproducts created, and avoid the environmental and culinary concerns caused by lye peeling.

  • All water is reused throughout the factory several times and is then thoroughly cleaned and filtered before discharge.  Once water has cycled through the Escalon plant and through the onsite filtration process, it is discharged to the city treatment system and ultimately circulated back into the rivers and streams in the area.
  • The process of canning tomatoes often produces a byproduct called pumice. The pumice produced by the Escalon factory can be re-used as animal feed, so none is wasted as a result of our process.

The Escalon factory also has reduced its greenhouse gases by 22% since 2008, which put the company ahead of the California state requirements. 

1J. Scott Smith and Yiu H. Hui, “Food processing: principles and applications,” 2004

2United States Department of Agriculture, “Development of Sustainable Tomato Peeling System by Using Infrared Radiation Heating,” April 1, 2010-Dec. 31, 2011
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