Mechanical food processing utilizes impact, shear or compression without heat or chemicals to change a food product's physical form. In bulk material handling systems that involve sugar, mechanical processing equipment adds efficiency and value by improving the flow properties of sugar or by reducing its size to powder form. For many food manufacturers and bakeries, there is a substantial savings to milling the sugar in-house versus purchasing bulk powdered sugar.
Which Product is Best for Your Processing Operation?
Typical industrial sugar mill machinery would feature Fine Grinders, Airlocks, Lump Breakers and Air Classifying Mills. All of these solutions offer scalability in the manufacturing of sugar food products.
Fine Grinders for Confectioners Sugar
While applicable to a wide variety of dry solids handling applications, Fine Grinders are ideally suited for the processing of raw granular sugar into typical confectionery grades used for baking. Fine Grinders utilize impact and shear to efficiently reduce granular particles into a powder. In particular, Fine Grinders commonly pulverize dry, free-flowing materials to as fine as 400 mesh (37 microns) with a very tight distribution of particle size. For sugar, Fine Grinders are often used to manufacture sugar to 100 and 200 mesh grades, commonly referred to as 6x, 8x or 10x confectioners. Designed to operate within a pneumatic convey circuit, Fine Grinders can mill heat-sensitive materials such as sugar with a high degree of dust control.
Airlocks for System Efficiency
Airlocks, or rotary airlock valves are another type of industrial machinery used to process sugar. Airlocks are typically used in sugar processing applications to meter bulk solids ahead of a grinding mill or at the feed point of a pneumatic circuit. In this application, they are critical to ensuring the efficiency of a process by providing a steady, controlled rate of flow to downstream equipment. Airlocks are also essential in the operation of pneumatic conveying systems by maintaining a differential pressure (air seal) between the bulk storage device and pneumatic circuit they interconnect. This air seal is vital to ensure the pneumatic system has sufficient pressure or vacuum to convey material to its termination point.
Lump Breakers for Compacted Sugar
Lump breakers, also called lump crushers, are another type of sugar mill machinery commonly found in food manufacturing plants and industrial bakeries. Lump Breakers prepare sugar for conveying, mixing or further size reduction by gently conditioning lumps of compacted or agglomerated material without reducing its natural grain size. Many raw materials and bulk solids become compacted, forming lumps and agglomerations due to transportation, production, or prolonged storage. Due to its hygroscopic nature, sugar is particularly susceptible to forming lumps, particularly when stored or processed for extended periods without proper humidity control. For that reason, they are often used at the outlet of bulk bag unloading stations and bulk storage silos to condition the raw sugar prior to further processing.
Air Classifying Mills for Improving Performance
Air Classifying Mills are another milling machine used to make fine confectioners and fondant grades of sugar. Operating with a similar principle to Fine Grinders, Air Classifying Mills combine impact milling with an internal air classifier for precise separation and re-circulation of fine particles based on size. For this reason, they are capable of manufacturing sugar to 200 mesh and 325 mesh grades commonly referred to as 12X and fondant. In dry material handling operations like sugar processing, the production may require tailored particle properties. Air Classifying Mills offer the unique ability to make precise, on-line adjustments to particle size by utilizing a Variable Frequency Drive (VFD).
Your Solution for Sugar Processing Challenges
Prater Industries offer scalable sugar processing solutions designed to fulfill the production needs of food manufacturers. Some of the largest and most renowned food manufacturers and industrial bakeries turn to Prater for reliable, easy-to-maintain, state-of-the-art mechanical food processing equipment to meet production requirements.