The expert in mixing and preparation technology is making a push into the food sector in 2024 and will be presenting its products at the international trade fair in Cologne. The company plans to use its know-how to help the confectionery & snacks industry develop resource-efficient production systems for high-quality products and to highlight new options for the sector.
Hardheim, November 2023: ProSweets premiere for Eirich – the company from Hardheim in Germany will be showing off its mixing technology to a specialist audience at this year's industry get-together and highlighting its role of industry trendsetter at the same time. For 160 years, Eirich has been the expert for mixing technology, continuously driving new developments and evolving its products for new areas of application. With its CleanLine C5, the company now presents a machine that meets the exacting standards of the food industry for applications in which good hygiene and avoidance of contamination are vital.
The mixer is capable of running through multiple process steps one after the other or as an overlapping sequence and is a universal machine for laboratory development and small-scale production. The technology will enable companies to unlock new product categories and expand their portfolio.
“In the past, we had many requests from interested companies in the food industry who were familiar with our technology from other industries and were keen to use it themselves. It was clear to us that this could be a huge field of application with complex processes and tremendous potential. We have now responded to this demand and are able to offer suitable solutions. This is a real win-win solution – both for new customers and for us,” is how CEO Stephan Eirich explains the new drive into industries in which hygienic processes are essential.
All-in-one: a single unit combining multiple process steps
The mixer is a versatile food processor that can perform multiple process steps – such as mixing, granulating, coating, kneading, dispersing, dissolving, or defibrating – in a single mixing chamber. This multifunctionality replaces multiple machines. With this one-pot method, the number of interfaces and transfer points is also reduced, boosting efficiency and reducing the risk of contamination at the same time. Thanks to the unique Eirich mixing principle with a rotating mixing pan and the eccentrically mounted mixing tool with variable speed and reversible direction of operation, the system achieves 100% material agitation with every rotation of the mixing pan. With the double-jacket design for controlled temperature conditioning (heating and cooling), it is e.g. possible to perform melt granulation processes or manufacture temperature-sensitive products. As an additional option, mixing under vacuum is also possible.
User friendliness and intuitive handling/operation were key driving factors in the development of the web-based control system. Digital recipe management and the option of accessing visualized process data and logs/reports with the display and analysis tool “Eirich ProView” make production processes considerably easier.
Christina Häfner, Product and Innovation Manager at Eirich: “We want to show our customers new ways and new options for product designs that they are not aware of yet. With the aid of our expertise they can achieve real process improvements. Particularly in the field of hygienic applications, such as in food production, we are in a position to set new standards with our mixing principle and the unrivaled quality of our solutions. Complex preparation techniques are what we specialize in. For example, wet methods can be converted to dry methods with the aid of reactions that take place in the pan, which shortens production time and saves energy.”
Smart systems for consistent product quality
Consistently high quality is essential in food production. With its QualiMaster VC1 and VC2 solutions, Eirich offers analytical tools for production that do not come into contact with the product.
VC1 is equipped with a special camera that continuously records, processes, and analyzes images. In the process, the system identifies and calculates numerous parameters and product properties from the images. In the process, the assessment of the quality parameters can be performed by the person operating the system, or this can be handled by intelligent control algorithms.
VC2 features a universal camera system for automatic trend detection via AI-based image analysis, thus making it a universal instrument for quality assessment of materials of all types and consistencies. The smart quality system takes images of the product immediately downstream of the mixer. Based on the images, a decision is then taken whether the condition and consistency of the material matches the requirements, or whether undesirable trends are evident in relation to the material properties. In contrast to the VC1 system, VC2 does not measure any concrete values or parameters from the images, but instead uses deep learning – a sub-area of machine learning – to compare the actual results against reference images.
ProSweets is the international trade fair for suppliers to the confectionery & snacks industry. The trade fair will take place from January 28- 31, 2024 in Cologne. The Eirich stand can be found in hall 10.1 at booth E071.