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What Is Mixing In Food Processing
May 17, 2023
We all know that mixing to a uniform mixture is required when food processing, there are multiple mixing techniques to achieve a desired result. But do we understand it at a scale of manufacturing and processing for retailing, where consistency and standards are key. Here is a simple overview of mixing in food processing that might help you decide what your requirements are.
Mixing is required to bring together ingredients to a uniform mixture, recreating the recipe time and again. The mixing process combines 2 or more ingredients to produce a homogenous mixture that can be replicated time and again to create a consistent output of mixture. Often this mixing involves liquid and powder, liquid and solid, or watery liquid and oils.
Heavy duty mixers
The mixers used in large batch food processing are industrial in nature, not like our little mixers in our kitchen. They need to be hard wearing, built of quality material, and cope with large quantities of ingredients. They need to be durable, and easy to sterilize. Investing in a quality steel machine, with higher quality steel on all wetted parts, ensures longevity of the purchase in use and therefore a better return on investment.
Types of mixers used
Mixers are engineered to perform certain mixing styles to create the right mixture and homogenous action. You could find that one mixer could perform well on one recipe, but struggle to consistent with another. Here is some information on the most used mixers in food manufacturing and processing.
High Shear Mixing
High sheer mixing is often used to emulsify ingredients, such as oil and water and in food processing where there is a semi solid to be pureed so particle size is decreased, where a syrup needs mixed, where a powder needs to mix with a liquid, or when the food or beverage needs to form an emulsion.
A high sheer mixer creates a thorough combining action where the combination of ingredients might be a challenge with normal blending or mixing methods.
These mixers can come as batch mixers, with a vertical mixing set up, or can be created to be inline to be a continuous mixer as part of a longer line of process.
Using a high-quality steel when engineering a mixer and ensuring no pits or cervices are in the mixer are important for hygiene in the food processing industry.
The batch mixers can be fitted with jackets to cool or heat the product as required to support the mixing process.
Propellor mixing creates a vortex, so is sometimes known as vortex mixing. This is particularly useful when adding a powder to a liquid. Most of the mixing occurs in that first pass into the vortex around the propellor, making it a time efficient process. As the propeller mixer agitates the contents, the product will travel down through the propellor, up the sides of the vessel, then back down through the propellor again.
Single planetary mixers are the most used in food processing for products with high viscosity such as dough, cream, or thicker ingredient combinations where the blade travels through every point within the batch, not just a single point. The more viscosity in the ingredient mix, the more likelihood it will ‘climb’ the blades and this is when a double planetary mixer, with more blades me be required.
Food mixing with Pharma Hygiene
Pharma Hygiene mixers and vessels are all made from 304 steel with 316 on all wetted parts to ensure high quality finish with no pits or nooks for ingredients to get trapped in. Both high shear and propellor mixer options are powerful and create high revolutions per minute (RPM) vessels can come in different sizes and the mixers can mix quantities from 20L to 300L depending on the requirements and viscosity. We can also add jackets to heat, cool, heat and cool and control the requirements for your ingredients to mix at optimum temperature for them.
Customise to get it right for you
At Pharma Hygiene Products, we can customise vessels and mixers to meet your needs and have an expert team of engineers who can problem solve with you to ensure you get the most from your mixer. We have proven high shear mixers, and propellor mixers to suit most needs. Send your enquiry, give us a call or chat here now to see how we can help you. No question is a bad question!