smokehouse breakpoint

5 Design Components You Need to Improve the Smokehouse Breakpoint

The smokehouse breakpoint is the most important aspect of any industrial oven.

This one feature is directly responsible for cooking your product, coloring your product, and either increasing or decreasing your product yields, depending on the strength and velocity of the breakpoint.

A strong breakpoint — one that makes it all the way across the cart to heat all product on that level — should be the main focus when investing in a smokehouse, as it results in a more consistent product, as each piece of product is receiving the same amount of airflow.

But how do you know if a smokehouse will have a strong breakpoint?

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sanitary conveyor design

7 Design Features You Need to Have on a Sanitary Conveyor

 

Sanitary conveyor design is a huge concern for most food processing companies — especially when it comes to conveyors that move unpackaged product from one workstation to the next.

Ensuring the conveyor purchased is designed to eliminate bacteria harboring points, is easy to clean, and reduces the risk of product contamination reduces the risk of a costly product recall and keeps customers safe.

Sanitary Conveyor Design Features

But how do you know if a sanitary conveyor really is sanitary? We put together a list of the top 7 features that need to be included on a conveyor in order for it to be considered sanitary.

When purchasing a food processing conveyor, make sure it includes these 7 sanitary design features.Click To Tweet

tig welds

TIG Welds

TIG welds are required on all food processing equipment as they prevent bacteria from harboring in weldment areas.

TIG welding has a tighter bead, is more controllable, and results in a smaller weld. Bulkier welds can produce nooks, crannies, and fractures where bacteria can grow and fester during use and pose a food safety issue.

When sanitation is a concern, the goal is to create welds that are smooth — without any buildup, undercuts, burrs, nooks, crannies, or fractures.


stand offs

Stand-Offs and Spacers

Bacteria loves to hide where metal rests on metal and is not welded together — components like motors, gearboxes, and the like.

To prevent bacteria growth, sanitary conveyors should include UHMW stand-offs and spacers to prevent metal-on-metal contact between the various components and framework of the conveyor.


pivoting carryways


Pivoting Captured Carryways

Belt conveyors require carryways to ensure the belt operates correctly, but when carryways are permanently captured to the frame, they can create pockets of bacteria growth.

Some manufacturers opt for removable carryways to allow for easy cleaning, but that poses a maintenance issue. Any time a component part can be completely removed is an opportunity for it to get lost or broken.

Pivoting captured carryways solve both problems: the carryway is permanently fixed on one end to ensure proper placement and that it doesn’t get misplaced or lost. The pivoting feature allows you to easily lift the carry for cleaning and maintenance.


toolless belt removal

Tool-less Belt Removal

Bacteria can easily harbor in the area under the conveyor belt, making it a prime area that needs to be regularly cleaned — but on most conveyors can prove to be a long and difficult process.

The ability to quickly and easily remove the conveyor belt, without the need for special tools or parts that are easily misplaced or lost, will aide in the cleaning process and give you piece of mind that your cleaning crew is cleaning under the belt.

Look for a conveyor that offers a tool-less belt removal system.


fasteners

Minimized Fastener Use

Any form of non-welded fastener, such as bolts, create a metal-on-metal surface where bacteria can harbor.

While there are some instances where fasteners are unavoidable, especially in the case of options that need to be changed out, you should always look for a conveyor that uses minimal fasteners to reduce the risk of bacteria. The less metal-on-metal contact, the better.


channel frame

Under Bent Channel Frame

Flat spots in the frame of any conveyor provide a space for water and product to sit, which in turn gives bacteria a place to harbor. It’s why AMI Sanitary Design Requirements recommend little to no horizontal or flat surfaces.

Channel frame that is under bent eliminates flat spots in the conveyor framework so no water or product is able to pool in one place and harbor bacteria.


angle frame

Angle Frame

Tube frame gives bacteria harboring points as well as dark spaces to grow quickly — and is incredibly hard to clean correctly to kill all bacteria.

Always look for a conveyor with open architecture on the framework. It eliminates bacteria harboring points and makes the cleaning process easier and more efficient.


Investing in Sanitary Design

Sanitary design is an investment in the future of your company and the safety of your product — and no place is more important for sanitary design than the conveyors in your facility.

The design features above should be considered non-negotiable when it comes to equipping your facility with a sanitary conveyor system, both for your bottom line and the safety of your customers.

In order to help you, we developed a check list complete with pictures you can use the next time you purchase a conveyor to ensure it meets all sanitary design requirements.

Download the Checklist

shredding hot cold

The 1 Overlooked Difference Between Shredding Hot and Cold

The number one question we get asked concerning shredding protein is this: should I be shredding hot or cold?

It’s a legitimate question to ask. The temperature of your protein product when you run it through a shredding machine plays a big role in the consistency and look of the shreds.

Choose the wrong temperature (hot versus cold), and you’ll wind up with shreds you weren’t expecting — and, as many do, blame the shredding machine for the less than desirable outcome to your shreds.

Answering this question starts with having a goal in mind for your shreds.

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beef

How To Cook Beef for Better Looking Shreds

The popularity of shredded beef is at an all time high and smart companies are finding ways to produce a more consistent, hand pulled look to their product.

The reason is obvious: consumers want to buy a shredded beef product that closely resembles what they could make at home. The more consistent the shreds, the more it looks like it was pulled apart with forks, the better.

Achieving that hand pulled look is difficult though. Shredding product by hand isn’t scale-able and often requires a large investment in labor, while some meat shredding machines can produce a clumpy product.

So how do you get that hand pulled look consumers want? Simple, you change how you cook your product.

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cook chicken

How To Cook Chicken for Better Looking Shreds

The popularity of shredded chicken is at an all time high and smart companies are finding ways to produce a more consistent, hand pulled look to their product.

The reason is obvious: consumers want to buy a shredded chicken product that closely resembles what they could make at home. The more consistent the shreds, the more it looks like it was pulled apart with forks, the better.

Achieving that hand pulled look is difficult though. Shredding product by hand isn’t scale-able and often requires a large investment in labor, while some meat shredding machines can produce a clumpy product.

So how do you get that hand pulled look consumers want? Simple, you change how you cook your product.

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cook pork

How To Cook Pork for Better Looking Shreds

The popularity of shredded pork is at an all time high and smart companies are finding ways to produce a more consistent, hand pulled look to their product.

The reason is obvious: consumers want to buy a shredded pork product that closely resembles what they could make at home. The more consistent the shreds, the more it looks like it was pulled apart with forks, the better.

Achieving that hand pulled look is difficult though. Shredding product by hand isn’t scale-able and often requires a large investment in labor, while some meat shredding machines can produce a clumpy product.

So how do you get that hand pulled look consumers want? Simple, you change how you cook your product.

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scary good deals

1 Big Way to Save on Shredders and Slicers

Everyone likes a good deal, especially when the deal saves you a lot of money on equipment you need for your food processing plant.

It feels almost like Christmas morning — a shiny new piece of equipment to help you optimize your meat processing operation at a fraction of the cost. Your superiors will love the deal you got, your budget will love the money you saved, and you’ll love the reduction in time and labor. Who wouldn’t want that?

Well now you can take advantage of a deal like that!

From October 23 through November 3, we are offering deals on our line of meat shredders and slicers that are so good, they are scary!

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daily's premium meats bacon

Daily’s Premium Meats Featured in Meat + Poultry Magazine

The February issue of Meat + Poultry Magazine, a publication for news, ideas, trends, innovations, issues & more that impact the meat & poultry processing industry, features an in-depth look at the new Daily’s Premium Meats Bacon Plant in St. Joseph, Missouri. This $41.5 million plant produces sliced-to-order naturally hardwood smoked bacon and includes approximately 22,000 sf of refrigerated storage & coolers ranging in temperature from 34 degrees to a -10 degree freezer.

Fusion Tech had the privilege of supplying design, layout, and equipment fabrication services for two of the production rooms in the new bacon plant: a bacon injection, pepper, and hang line as well as a bacon press room.

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ISU cured meat short course

Fusion Tech Completes ISU Cured Meat Short Course

Three members of the Fusion Tech team — Brandon Bentz, Nick LaFauce, and Evan Greka — recently attended and successfully completed the Cured Meat Short Course offered at Iowa State University.

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st. jude donation

Fusion Tech Donates to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

Fusion Tech, with the help of clients and email newsletter subscribers, made a 2016 year-end donation of $2,500 to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

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