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Netzsch does the Rumba to optimise chocolate processing

By Joe Whitworth , 05-Feb-2013

Netzsch touts energy efficiency of Rumba production plant system
Netzsch touts energy efficiency of Rumba production plant system

Netzsch has claimed that it offers an energy efficient chocolate production process as its grinding and liquid-conching processes run simultaneously in different equipment.

The firm said its Rumba process uses a menu-guided control concept including temperature control, allowing precise adjustment for desired quality with end fineness <15 microns (μm)possible.

The result is a fully enclosed, integrated and high utilization level system that can be selected for the chocolate mass production.

It offers a more efficient process, lower footprint and space and more flexibility in the process, said Netzsch.

Plant process

The Rumba production plant concept can process different batch sizes depending on the model, ranging from 375kg to 6,000kg and requires space between 40m2 to 120m2

For example, the 6,000 model is equipped with two U-conches and two mills for the production of 60t/d in 24-hours of quality between 15-35 microns and fat content of 27%-50%, said the firm. 

The process involves raw material feeding, CHOCOEASY Conche, Process Tank, Refiner as well as the piping and electric system.

The main process steps can be divided in conching, with normally around two to four hours cycle depending on product type and quality requirements.

Refining has a typical cycle time of three to four hours which can be adjusted selecting the proper size of mill according the product and final quality.

Netzsch uses agitator bead mills rather than five-roll refiners for grinding the chocolate, meaning the processes of grinding and liquid-conching run together, leading to a faster processing time.

The bead mill refiners’ offer desired smoothness with fully enclosed operation for optimum energy use and product flexibility and exchange with quick changeover, claim the firm.

Less cocoa butter

The process also runs with less cocoa butter content (15-18%) rather than 23-28% so optimum transfer of the cocoa aroma to the sugar is achieved.

Lower fat content equals more free surface area of sugar available, accelerating the conching process and the mass is lighter leading to lower drive power and power consumption during conching.

The acids from cocoa fermentation, like acetic acid, are volatilized giving the mild flavor desired for chocolate mass which is obtained through the volumetric aeration of the dry chocolate mass under slow agitation.

Theron W. Harbs, general manager NETZSCH Confectionery, said: “Nowadays the chocolate producers are in need of a wider range of products with special features and the production plants must offer the demanded flexibility in application and product exchange in a simple way and short time without big costs, without losing the quality of the product and considering the hygienic design as well as good manufacturing procedures with increasing attention to this requirements for new production plants.”

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