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Air Products Freshline LIN-IS System Betters Food Processing

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Air Products' (APD - Free Report) Freshline LIN-IS system allows food manufacturers to optimize processing speed and product quality. The system offers rapid, precise temperature control to blenders or mixer/grinders by utilizing liquid nitrogen.

The system helps to regulate the temperature of food products by keeping them within half a degree of the desired temperature during grinding, blending or forming by injecting ultra-cold liquid nitrogen. Freshline LIN-IS system provides additional cooling of products prior to forming or other processing steps. Also, it can remove heat generated by friction and mechanical energy in mixing equipment.

The system is available in either a bottom or top injection unit and can be retrofitted to new or existing mixers, blenders or any type of stainless steel vessel. In order to meet food manufacturers’ specific processing equipment and temperature requirements, the nozzle size, arrangement and configuration have been customized. Adhering to the latest hygienic design standards, the system is easy to operate, clean and maintain.

Air Products has underperformed the industry over a year. The company’s shares have moved up around 2.9% over this period, compared with roughly 27.3% gain recorded by the industry.

Air Products, in August, increased its adjusted earnings per share guidance for the full year. For fiscal 2017, Air Products expects adjusted earnings per share of $6.20-$6.25 (up from $6.00-$6.25 expected earlier), which at midpoint, represents a 10% increase from the prior year. For the fourth-quarter fiscal 2017, Air Products anticipates adjusted earnings per share from continuing operations of $1.65-$1.70 per share, which at midpoint, also represents a 12% increase from the prior year.

Air Products is well placed to leverage the cyclical recovery in core industrial end-markets. The company has built a strong project backlog. These projects are expected to be accretive to earnings and cash flow over the next few years. Acquisitions and new business wins are expected to continue to drive results. The company is also progressing well with its $600 million cost-cutting program.

Air Products also has significant amount of cash to invest in its core industrial gases business. The company expects to deploy roughly $8 billion in strategic, high-return opportunities to create shareholders value over the next three years.

Air Products and Chemicals, Inc. Price and Consensus


Zacks Rank & Other Stocks to Consider

Air Products currently carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

Some other top-ranked stocks in the chemical space are Arkema S.A. , Kronos Worldwide (KRO - Free Report) and Akzo Nobel N.V. (AKZOY - Free Report) . All three stocks sport a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Arkema has an expected long-term earnings growth of 12.8%.

Kronos Worldwide has an expected long-term earnings growth of 5%.

Akzo Nobel has an expected long-term earnings growth of 11.1%.

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