The gas industry has become one of the main promoters of growth and health in the country, by ensuring the capacity to supply nitrogen, a vital element for the production of the most dynamic sector of the Costa Rican economy, reflected in the Free Trade Zone Coyol, which generates more than 16,000 direct jobs.
But how do they do it? “Large companies that produce a diverse range of medical devices and others, installed in Costa Rica, use nitrogen in controlled atmosphere or modified atmosphere systems, to displace oxygen from the packaging and prevent the product from oxidizing or contaminating. This element is vital in neuro-endovascular products, breast implants, cardiovascular implants, endoscopic implants, orthopedics, and heart valves, among others, that need to be sterilized”, explained Minor Calvo, General Manager of Costa Rican Air Products.
The behavior in the demand for nitrogen, which has been increasing for 7 years, is exclusive to Costa Rica in the region. “This phenomenon is due to the conditions of political stability, quality of labor, strategic geographical location, which have become a great magnet for the attraction of companies in the medical industry. ProductosdelAire is the only regional company with a production capacity of medical and industrial gases of 700 tons per day, which demonstrates the ability to supply this industry”,Calvo stressed.
This industry can save lives, ripe bananas, create bubbles, and build gates
Although we cannot see them in their natural state, gases are present in practically all activities and fulfill key functions in saving people’s lives and facilitating the different activities of daily life in homes and contributing to the production of companies. .
The Covid-19 pandemic made visible the importance of medical oxygen in saving millions of lives and tested the capacity, effectiveness and efficiency of the air products industry. “In other industries, they help ripening bananas and pineapples, they preserve other products such as cheese in a more natural way, and they are present in construction tools such as welding, the latter, one of the products with the highest sales growth in the country”, emphasized the General Manager of Air Products of Costa Rica, Minor Calvo.
But also the gases and in particular the carbon dioxide, generate the flavor and the incomparable sensation of the bubbles in carbonated drinks. In addition, it is used as a fire extinguisher and growth stimulant in controlled greenhouses. For this type of product, the company has a production plant on the slopes of the Poás volcano, in Alajuela.
Calvo reviews the determining points of the constant growth of Productos del Aire: “Successfully overcoming the vital supply of medical oxygen in the pandemic and being prepared for any eventuality is due to the strategic installed capacity, the mobilization of the product in the region and the innovative system for remote monitoring of all storage tanks (telemetry), which allows real-time viewing of the amount of daily consumption, product level, loading and empty date”.
For the company’s senior executive, positioning and growth in the Costa Rican market requires Air Products to invest in new storage tanks, specialized transport units, the latest technology, the highest safety standards and training of all the staff. “Continuing with the business strategy of the regional conglomerate, it recently began operating a plant in Panama, as part of the 5-year planning to meet regional demand”.
ProductosdelAire takes the safety of all personnel, customers and the environment of end users seriously, and for this it has rigorous certifications such as that of the United States Department of Transportation (DOT), which minimizes the risk of cylinder-related explosions.
The Company’s Plant and Operations Manager, Laura Borbón, highlighted that they also have the ISO 4500, ISO 9001:2015, FCSS 22000 certification. “We have an Integral Management System that goes beyond meeting all the requirements of national and international certifications. We know and identify the risks related to this industry, but above all, that behind each process and delivery of products, there are people. It is for all of them and their families that we work every day for a safer environment”, said Borbón.