The demand for bakery processing equipment will witness growth, but the management of waste in the food production line is a major challenge for the industry. Equipment that does not work efficiently may result in burnt, undercooked or even over-mixed food, ultimately generating waste.
It is also a major limitation in achieving the level of quality on the production floor. Furthermore, the use of sub-standard equipment results in poor-quality food being produced. For the bakery processing equipment sector, all these factors are expected to be restrictive.
Bakery waste is the result of different bakery management decisions and can occur at all stages of bakery production: it can consist of unsold loaves of bread and bakery items that have reached the end of their shelf life and are then dumped as waste. These can be caused by insufficient lot sizes/minimum order quantities.
What is bakery processing equipment?
Miller, mixer/kneading unit, former bun, and bread, fermenter, bake ovens, cold stage, and boilers are the main equipment. Milling, blending, fermenting, baking and storage are the primary processes. Usually, fermentation and baking are done at 40°C and 160°-260 ° C respectively. The products can be stored at 4-20°C, depending on the logistics and the market.
What causes waste in bakery procedures?
- Production sequencing and changeovers
Waste often occurs during a change from one line to another, e.g. where the remaining dough from a specified batch is inadequate in making a full product and cannot be used in the production of the line.
- Process compliance
Where processes are defined to minimize waste and ensure that any waste is properly handled, all members of the bakery team must follow them. Failure to do so can have a significant impact on waste.
- Ingredient lot sizes/ minimum order quantities/ order frequencies
Waste can be produced as a result of inappropriate lot sizes/minimum order quantities and/or frequencies resulting in the ordering and use of ingredients in higher quantities than needed, to meet the demand. For example, in the case of pre-mixed ingredients, packaging sizes that are higher than the quantity required to produce a product batch means that the surplus ingredients must either be stored and then used or discarded.
- Pressurized environment
Meeting daily production plans to ensure that all freshly baked stocks are on the shelves at the right time is a complex process that allows little room for error or delay. Any additional stresses (e.g. seasonal lines, weather-related changes in demand, illness, holidays, broken or defective equipment, etc.) can put additional pressure on the bakery teams which, in turn, can increase waste, e.g. due to rushing to meet time pressures.
Ideal methods to deal with processing waste and wastewater
The waste from the bakery industry is generally non-toxic. It can be categorized into solid, liquid, and gaseous waste. There are high levels of organic pollutants in the liquid phase, including chemical oxygen demand (COD), BOD5, and fats, oils and greases (FOG) and SS. Physical, chemical and biological processes usually treat wastewater.
Pre-treatment or primary treatment is a sequence of physical and chemical processes that both precondition the wastewater and eliminate some of the waste. Treatment is usually arranged in the following order: screening, flow equalization and neutralization, optional separation of FOG, optional acidification, coagulation-sedimentation, and dissolved flotation of air.
Innovations in waste management
Food wastage is a major problem. Every year, tons of food is wasted at a value of over £20m. These missing food products are linked with more than 25 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions, wasted in homes, hospitality and foodservice, food manufacturing, retail and wholesale industries.
According to WRAP sustainability experts, who calculated these estimates for 2015, surplus bread is one of the food retailers' biggest waste problems. The charity for food waste intervention claimed that surplus bakery items, including freshly baked lines, accounted for nearly one-third–or 67,500 tons –of the overall UK food waste from retail.
Using in-store surpluses to make a delicious new product preserves good food from spoiling and lowers the cost of waste to the company. Bread is also the second most wasted food in the household, and countries as a whole, waste about one million loaves every day.
Baker Perkins strengthened its product offerings by launching equipment to make crunchy granola bars. This expansion aimed to ramp up production for accurate guillotining of baked granola bars. Working towards the waste management concept, Baker Perkins launched TruClean™ Series3 rotary molder in August 2018. The molder can address the industry’s highest standards of hygiene, cleaning costs, and low maintenance. The product was primarily launched to bake soft dough biscuits and sandwich cookies.
The bakery processing equipment market is fuelled with the help of constant advancements and preventive measures covered by the industry giants. Huge sums in R&D are invested by equipment manufacturers to allow bakers to improve operational efficiency and create application-specific products to meet challenging consumer demands. Bakers are gravitating towards strategic machinery investments that not only streamline their activities but also drive business forward for the long haul.
The increased demand for bakery products, such as bread, pizza crust, and cakes and pastries, is expected to fuel the market. Rising demand for upgraded equipment would further accelerate developments in the industry. Manufacturers concentrate on technological advances in bakery manufacturing equipment to maintain high competition. They use advanced technologies to create new and effective machinery to attain market share. Industry experts reached a predictive conclusion keeping into consideration the perpetual technology upgradations and strategic investments.