Swiss-based technology firm Buhler has always been keen to move beyond its European base and into new global markets. This decades-long strategy has proved highly successful, as the recent completion of a state of the art mill in El Salavdor shows.
The technology firm has worked with MOLSA (Molinos de El Salvador), El Salvador's biggest milling company, to provide technology and equipment for its fourth grain mill. The facility, which is one of the most advanced food production plants in Latin America, has the capacity to process about 1,000 metric tons of grain a day.
The state of the art San Andrés industrial complex is situated 30 kilometers from San Salvador, the capital of the Central American republic. The facility includes a modern cake factory and a grain mill with one of the highest milling capacities in Latin America. MOLSA also produces filled cakes, a kind of cracker, and round butter cakes.
Other products include ready mixes for making pancakes, cakes, crêpes, queiquitos, and pizza, in addition to wheat flour in bags or in bulk.
Buhler claims that the new mill sets new standards in food processing technology. The plant is capable of processing 350 metric tons of wheat a day, in addition to the 650 tons a day of the three existing milling systems. The San Andrés mill manufactures products for the El Salvador and Guatemalan markets.
The completion of the plant will also help MOLSA in its plans to export its products to other regional markets in the near future. The company also plans to begin trading in the Caribbean.
Buhler has a deep connection with El Salvador. In 1959, the company built its first mill for MOLSA, and the plant, situated on the Boulevard del Ejército, has become a landmark of the city of San Salvador.
The mill provided the country with top-grade wheat flour for the first time. At that time, the plant processed 85 tons of wheat a day, and the flour storage bins had a holding capacity of some 5,500 tons of flour. A short time later, in 1965, a new installation was constructed with a grinding capacity of 170 tons a day.
In 1984, MOLSA approached Buhler with new expansion plans. Plant capacity was unable to keep up with demand, so Buhler replaced the packaging system. What made the new plant so innovative was the fact that it was fully automated.
Buhler is a gobal technology group that provides plant equipment and expertise in the fields of food processing, chemical engineering, and die casting.