Multitex4 Dough Moulders
The revolutionary new APV Baker Multitex4 dough moulder
provides several distinct benefits in bread quality, and
contributes to a longer shelf life. Leading plant bakers in the UK,
Europe and Africa have invested in 40 machines since its
introduction last year after 18 months of development and
The Multitex4 has, uniquely, four pairs of sheeting rollers - each pair with individually controlled variable gap and variable speed. This improves end product quality by controlling size, shape and length-to-width ratio of the dough piece. It allows tighter coiling, while at the same time significantly reducing stress to the dough through a more progressive thickness reduction.
Graham Andrews, Chief Process Technology, Bakery says "Several orders were placed after comparative tests with conventional machines were carried out in APV Baker's Innovation Centre. Using their own ingredients to evaluate the benefits of the four-roll concept, our customers found that volume and cell counts increased by around 10%, with an improved crumb structure."
These benefits translate into better resistance to tearing; a whiter loaf; a loaf up to 18% softer; and a strong, straight sided shape that fills the tin well - particularly important for sandwich producers.
A Multitex4 moulding head can be retrofitted to an existing moulder to provide a low-cost route to the premium quality market. If production costs are a priority, the Multitex4 provides the opportunity to significantly reduce the expense of key ingredients such as improvers, without sacrificing quality.
The sheeting head can be retrofitted to most types of existing moulder, or supplied as part of a complete new unit.
Engineers and process technologists developing this new machine identified maximising dough cell count, and reducing the dough piece as progressively as possible, as key factors that have an impact on bread quality. "The number of moulding rolls was clearly crucial" says Andrews. "Existing moulders had a maximum of three, so we decided to upgrade to four, in the same size frame to allow retrofitting."
Bakers were asked for improvements they would like to see in other aspects of moulder design. Maintenance, cleaning, hygiene and dough piece centralisation headed the list.
A flexible test bed utilised the DOE (Design of Experiments) technique to identify more than 50 trials, on a variety of dough and bread types, which would provide maximum information. Simultaneous tests on previous generation moulders established the improvements achieved.
A prototype unit followed and bakers invited to see this in action rated the hygiene and maintenance aspects as a great improvement. They also appreciated a solution to the centralisation issue: rollers located prior to sheeting ensure the dough is presented consistently to the sheeting rollers from any direction - previously it had to be 'in-line'. Central dough piece presentation is key to consistent 4 piecing and reliable running.
Andrews says, "Research on this project gave us a clear, scientific understanding of the handling required at this stage of the process to minimise damage and improve the quality of the final product.
"We believe we have achieved a step-change in loaf quality, purely as a result of these improvements in moulding technology." The Multitex4 enhances the performance of any mixing system. It particularly maximises the benefits of the Pressure Vacuum option available with APV Baker Tweedy mixers, by retaining the high cell count this process creates in the dough. This leads directly to increased volume, improved texture, and a softer crumb.