Blog: Baker Perkins’ unique system ensures even baking
Highlight of the Baker Perkins booth 10223 at Pack Expo was the latest SBX Master™ twin-screw extruder for snacks and cereals; plus a focus on depositing technology to meet the growing demand for fortified functional and medicated candy.
There was a full array of candy, snack and cereal products made on Baker Perkins equipment; plus a spotlight on the company’s resources for the biscuit, cookie, bar and cracker sectors.
Full detail of the exhibition can be found at http://www.packexpointernational.com.
The latest SBX Master™ twin-screw extruder for breakfast cereal production on show at Pack Expo will be installed in the Baker Perkins Inc. Innovation Center at Grand Rapids, Michigan. Here it will be available for customers from the snack, cereal and other extruded food sectors to create new products and processes, produce samples for evaluation, conduct feasibility trials and train staff.
This extruder includes an extended barrel that increases the range of process options for extruded breakfast cereal flakes; this technique combines cooking, cooling and pellet forming in a single extruder to provide a compact system suitable for the majority of extruded flakes.
At Grand Rapids, the full capabilities of the SBX Master™ Extruder range will be available for testing. These include extruded and cut, direct expanded and filled co-extruded products.
Three topics were highlighted by Baker Perkins at Pack Expo – production of extruded breakfast cereals (including the extended barrel extruder for flakes); an upgraded Cook Master™ rotary steam cooker; and equipment for granola cereal and bars.
The Cook Master™ rotary steam cooker is a high-output batch machine that processes milled or whole grain cereals including wheat, corn, bran and rice. The upgrade includes a completely new slide valve arrangement that improves performance, reduces maintenance and enhances safety. Pressure is maintained more reliably in the vessel during cooking by an air-assisted floating seal that also cleans the underside of the valve as it retracts. The seal can be changed by a single operator without the use of tools in under 10 minutes.
The granola sector is developing rapidly, and Baker Perkins is emphasizing a proven ability to produce baked granola in both bar and ready-to-eat cereal forms: baking provides optimum cooking of the grains for texture and flavour.
The SBX Master™ extruder on the booth at Pack Expo is also used in the snack industry. Innovation is the main driver of growth in this diverse and highly fragmented market and twin-screw extrusion has a lot of untapped potential in this respect.
Extrusion can process ingredients from a wide range of sources including grains, vegetables, legumes and fruit. Texture can be varied from light and crispy to hard and crunchy while a variety of post-extrusion forming and cutting techniques can be used to add interest and variety.
Co-extrusion increases the scope for innovative product development further. The technique involves extruding a hollow tube of cereal while simultaneously injecting a low-moisture cream or paste filling into the centre. The tubes are then cut or crimped into pillows, bars, sticks or wafers to form bite-size or hand-held snacks.
Baker Perkins focussed on the application of deposited hard candy and jellies to carry over-the-counter medications or dietary supplements. Functional, and especially medicated, candy is not new but the accuracy and hygiene of modern cooking and depositing techniques has broadened the range of potential applications.
The functional sector ranges from boosting the intake of essential nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, fibre and protein to adding beneficial supplements such as folic acid and Omega-3 to the diet. This sector also extends to sports nutrition where candy is ideally suited to portable and convenient energy and recovery products. Medicated products include ingredients such as antiseptics, menthol and eucalyptus oil to alleviate the symptoms of minor ailments such as coughs, colds, sore throats and nasal congestion.
The smooth mouth-feel and slow release of deposited hard candy is ideal for medicated products, while jelly and fruit products are more suited to functional applications. Both product types can be made with sugar or be sugar-free, and are of consistently high quality to support high pricing and healthcare positioning.
Of the technologies available to the medicated and functional candy sectors, depositing is undoubtedly the most appropriate because of the hygiene, accuracy and product quality it offers. Additionally, the process adheres to the principles of GMP and is readily capable of validation to FDA standards.
Baker Perkins customers take advantage of the widest available range of equipment to produce cookies, crackers and bars. Baker Perkins delivers complete, automatic production plants that include mixing, dough forming, baking and cream sandwiching technology; they harness the latest engineering and control expertise to maximize performance while making machines easier to operate, maintain and clean. To meet rapidly rising demand, a wide range of breakfast, cereal and health bars can be made as plain single-stream products, or with a variety of casings and fillings.
Machines upgraded to TruClean™ standards lower costs and improve hygiene, while maintaining outstanding levels of quality. Baker Perkins has the largest installed base and the greatest depth of resources. The company, based at Grand Rapids, Michigan, is the acknowledged market leader for production of cookie and soft dough biscuits.
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