Achieving a “Green” Industrial Bakery

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For a few decades now, many industries have considered the benefits of “going green.” This ubiquitous phrase often means different things to different people, but generally, it means reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the production of goods and services. In industrial baking, the day-to-day operations can be very resource heavy in this regard, but there are multiple benefits to reducing GHG emissions by creating a “green” facility. Not only can an industrial baking facility with a smaller GHG footprint help the environment, but it also reaps the benefits of operational energy savings and the trust of consumers who, more and more, value environmentally-conscious businesses. Whether a bakery opts for used bread production lines or installs an energy management system (EMS), going green has a solid return on investment.  

Energy-Efficient Lighting

There are several GHGs, with CO2 being the most famous, but methane is also a prominent and deleterious GHG. Methane causes 25 times more heating of the atmosphere per kg than CO2, and methane is one of the leading emissions in electricity production. Industrial bakeries consume a great deal of electricity, and one way to reduce this use is by installing LED lights throughout the production floor. LED lights have a longer lamp life than fluorescent, up to ten years, and therefore save money in lighting device cost production downtime because they require less frequent replacement. LEDs also use 75% less energy than other lights. For industrial bakery operations that require constant lighting for production, there are significant energy cost savings in opting for LEDs. 

Energy Management Systems

In any industrial bakery facility, there are multiple systems at work such as electrical, refrigeration, heating and air conditioning. The technology used to network and control these systems can be integrated into a single EMS controller that is programmable and responsive to building occupants, while also collecting real-time usage data that can help businesses optimize their energy use. The ability to centralize, visualize, and control disparate systems allows industrial bakeries to match occupancy schedules, identify failure points for precise remediation, and take advantage of the savings that come from optimized energy usage. 

Used Industrial Bakery Equipment

One part of the GHG footprint that many industrial bakeries cannot often control is the inherited footprint of the raw materials they use and the equipment they employ to process those materials. Some bakers will make a conscious effort to locally source ingredients or use manufacturers whose values align with their own. However, a sure way to minimize your footprint in this area is to purchase refurbished used industrial bakery equipment. No matter the equipment, be it used industrial ovens or a whole used production line, the lifecycle of this equipment is decades long and opting to “reuse” is always a green choice that saves money. 

 

Artisan Capital Partners tailors solutions and services designed to create liquidity from industrial bakery assets while consistently managing transaction risk. Artisan Capital Partners helps bakeries manage assessing equipment, dismantling, and transportation, as well as design, installation, and testing to provide bakeries with a liquidity event that meets their goals.

How to create a budget for scaling your industrial bakery

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The opportunity to scale your industrial bakery can be an exciting project, and sometimes a necessary one when demand for your product has outpaced your ability to meet it. The size and scope of scaling projects will vary from bakery to bakery and can range from updating to larger capacity equipment or adding another used bread production lines to renovating your existing space or building a new facility to accommodate your growing bakery operation. Regardless of the nature of your bakery’s scaling project, there are some helpful steps to creating an accurate and useful project budget.

Prioritize your operational needs

Before beginning a scaling project it’s important to be specific about what you want your future industrial bakery operation to look like. You may want to produce more pizza dough, but how much more pizza dough? Is it possible to reach the desired level of production at once or will scaling need to take place incrementally? What logistical requirements are a priority, such as hiring employees or investing in capital assets, and which ones can be delayed? Where can you save money, such as buying used Mecatherm industrial bakery equipment instead of new, and where is it imperative to spare no expense? These questions can help you focus your vision into a manageable scaling project.

Create a detailed plan and enumerate costs

Once the size, scope, and objectives of your scaling project are clearly defined, it’s time to develop a plan of execution. This includes an ideal timeline for the project, necessary deliverables for each phase, and the associated costs. In addition to the cost of equipment, materials, and contractor or installation expenses, bakeries should also account for the impact of the project on current operations. If the scaling project will disrupt or halt bakery production, account for the loss of revenue in the budget.  

Evaluate potential project professionals

A helpful resource for any industrial bakery looking to scale their operations is the professionals in the industry who specialize in precisely these business transitions. There are design-builders who can help optimize, organize, and oversee your scaling project, partnering with you to achieve the desired outcomes for your bakery operations and business. As you begin to engage these industry professionals, it is a good idea to interview several design-builders and follow-up on their references. Just as you would thoroughly evaluate a candidate for your business’ leadership team, it’s important to pursue the same level of research into potential design-builders and to similarly gauge their compatibility with your company culture.

Artisan Capital Partners tailors solutions and services designed to create liquidity from industrial bakery assets while consistently managing transaction risk. Artisan Capital Partners helps bakeries manage assessing equipment, dismantling, and transportation, as well as design, installation, and testing to provide bakeries with a liquidity event that meets their goals.

The basics of gluten-free industrial bakery manufacturing

Many bakeries, from small artisanal operations to large-scale industrial bakeries running new and used bread production lines, are exploring what it means to offer gluten-free products. The rise in customers looking for gluten-free pastries, bread, and other doughs continues to increase for several reasons, including a growing population afflicted with gluten-intolerance and celiac disease. These significant food allergies can pose challenges to industrial bakeries that produce both traditional and gluten-free products, but by employing a few basic best practices bakeries can safely and efficiently expand their baked product portfolio to include gluten-free options.

Introduce new processes

When adding gluten-free products to their line up, many bakeries may need to introduce new methods to their operations. These additional steps in procedures help to ensure that the gluten-free products avoid cross-contamination of allergens from traditional baked good production, in addition to helping ensure a quality gluten-free dough. This may mean adapting dough processing, such as experimenting with recipes, altering the production line makeup, or calibrating equipment, in or to accommodate the differing properties of gluten-free dough.

Bakeries will likely have to explore different sources for ingredients as well, as it is important to utilize Gluten-Free Certification Organization-approved suppliers of grain alternatives and other ingredients. It is also considered a best practice to employ separate storage areas for gluten-free and traditional products and to make sure ventilation systems are also segregated for those areas. Lastly, a necessary process to introduce is regularly testing baked products for the presence of allergens, such as with the Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay test.

Optimize for dual operation

For most bakeries, adding gluten-free baked products means running a dual operation. In order to optimize the incorporation of gluten-free production, there are a few different approaches that can be explored. Depending on the size and resources of a bakery, dedicated processing lines for both gluten-free and traditional bread work to maximize product output, minimize interruption in production, and mitigate the risk of allergen contamination. The arrangement of two production lines may not be feasible for all bakeries, however, and for those that need to share a bakery production line for both products that approach can be optimized by managing production schedules. For example, a bakery can start with the production of gluten-free products, clean and change-over equipment, and then commence the production process for traditional baked goods. Regardless of the type of operation a bakery decides to employ, proper cleaning is paramount. From the mixer to the used industrial oven, on dedicated or shared production lines, consistent and thorough cleaning practices will guarantee that all the efforts put in place to reduce cross-contamination are successful.

Artisan Capital Partners tailors solutions and services designed to create liquidity from industrial bakery assets while consistently managing transaction risk. Artisan Capital Partners helps bakeries manage assessing equipment, dismantling, and transportation, as well as design, installation, and testing to provide bakeries with a liquidity event that meets their goals.

An Overview of the International Association of Plant Bakers

There are several organizations within industrial baking, and these groups often work to bring together business leaders, researchers and academics, and sometimes political or regulatory groups. The aim of this cross-industry collaboration is usually to align efforts on important and emerging topics within the industrial baking industry and to promote the industry as a whole. The efforts of these organizations have far reaching impacts – from farmers producing raw materials to purveyors of used industrial ovens. The International Association of Plant Bakers (AIBI) is one of the largest of the industry organizations, with a long history and a broad membership.

History

AIBI is based out of Brussels and is formed by the national bakery associations of 16 countries, which in total represents over 2,200 large bakeries in Europe and beyond. AIBI is the abbreviation of the french title Association Internationale de la Boulangerie Industrielle, which translates in English to International Association of Plant Bakers. It was founded in 1956 in Paris and has stated its mission as representing its members’ interests, especially within European and international institutions such as the EU Commission, European Council, and European Parliament. This representation has taken many forms in the past, from founding initiatives that span the continent to disseminating information regarding new regulations such as food labeling to holding an annual Congress where members and industry leaders can convene.

Current objectives and membership

One of the current objectives of AIBI is to determine strategies for promoting bread in Europe. To that end, members of AIBI attended a joint symposium with the Federation of European Union Manufacturers and Suppliers of Ingredients to the Bakery, Confectionery, and Patisserie Industries (FEDIMA) that provided its content in three parts: “Part 1 – Perspectives on Bread and its Promotion Opportunities,” “Part 2 – The Different Bread Campaigns in Europe,” “Part 3 – Setting up Your Bread Promotion Campaign.” There are many well-known industrial baking industry businesses on their membership rolls, including Lesaffre, the world’s largest producer of baking yeast, and industrial baking equipment titans like Fritsch and Mecatherm. With member businesses such as these, the work and progress of AIBI in its mission resonates across the industry, in bakeries big and small, and in multiple layers of their business, whether that is how to label their products or when it’s time to scale and purchase used Mecatherm industrial bakery equipment.  

 

Artisan Capital Partners tailors solutions and services designed to create liquidity from industrial bakery assets while consistently managing transaction risk. Artisan Capital Partners helps bakeries manage assessing equipment, dismantling, and transportation, as well as design, installation, and testing to provide bakeries with a liquidity event that meets their goals.

Maintaining Value In Industrial Baking Equipment

Industrial bakery equipment is one of the highest costs and most vital purchases for a bakery. While industrial baking equipment enables the creation of a bakery’s core products, they are also valuable assets that can provide liquid resources to the company when needed. Proper care of bakery equipment is vital to realizing a good return on your investment when selling or exchanging products. Here are a few strategies to keep your equipment in demand.

Established Brands

As industrial baking equipment has both a high capital costs and is vital to the success of an operation, bakeries in general are risk averse when purchasing equipment. An industrial  bakery seeking equipment needs to be as certain as possible of the performance a machine will provide, its maintenance costs, and its operation lifetime. This means most industrial bakeries want to work with top brands that have proven technology and an establish maintenance industry, which helps to minimize the risks of unexpected costs.

Consistent Maintenance

One of the best ways to keep value in industrial baking equipment is to ensure that maintenance schedules are consistently kept. While it can be a difficult choice to stop a production line for preventative maintenance or justify the expense of new parts as existing ones begin to wear, it is important for the long-term health of the equipment. Keeping equipment painted and clean is another component of maintenance that will help preserve its value. Overall, following recommended bakery equipment maintenance procedures and keeping the equipment clean, painted and well-kept can increase the value of the equipment in the secondary market and pay dividends on the past maintenance costs.

Record Keeping

Keeping records of your equipment’s history, from purchasing, to maintenance, to operation, will provide the secondary market more information to accurately value the equipment. Without records, it could be assumed that your equipment is less valuable or more risky. With a few processes in place, a bakery can ensure that the provenance of their equipment is documented and all records are accurately maintained, which in turn provides potential buyers more certainty of the value of these assets and confidence in their potential purchase.

Artisan Capital Partners tailors solutions and services designed to create liquidity from industrial bakery assets while consistently managing transaction risk. Artisan Capital Partners helps bakeries manage assessing equipment, dismantling, and transportation, as well as design, installation, and testing to provide bakeries with a liquidity event that meets their goals.