New system to save energy in baking process

By Caroline Scott-Thomas

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Baking

MIWE has developed a heat recovery system which could provide bakers with significant energy savings by converting up to 25 per cent of energy used in baking back into hot water.

The manufacturers detail several benefits of the system, including the conversion of steam to hot water for use in the bakery, more consistent product quality and more environmentally friendly gas extraction.

The MIWE eco: nova system works by processing flue gas and steam separately, neutralising poisonous chemicals in the flue gas, while using the energy from the steam, and then discharging both through a single chimney.

Initial calculations, based on trials in Germany, indicate that a typical industrial bakery could save 600kW per day, although energy savings achievable from the equipment vary between bakeries and from product to product.

“Because of the steam aspect, you recover more energy from crusty rolls than from lighter products like croissants. The sheer weight of them means that moisture loss is greater, so the amount of recoverable energy is greater,”​ said Keith Stalker, director of European Process Plant which is distributing the system in the UK and Ireland.

Energy saving benefits

He said that people seeking to invest in the equipment should think early on about how they intend to use the hot water produced.

He told “It provides a number of opportunities to save energy. You need to calculate how much hot water you need in the bakery and how much the system will provide, whether that is all or half of it, for instance.”

The system also regulates oven exhaust by means of a frequency regulated fan, ensuring a constant vacuum and allowing consistent baking results independent of weather conditions, amount of piping or flue diameter.

Greater awareness

In addition, the manufacturers point out that the environmental benefits of purifying the flue gas could provide added ‘green credentials’ to companies’ marketing and advertising campaigns.

“These days there is so much concentration on energy saving but it is very recent in the baking industry,” said Stalker. “No one used to think about how much energy was escaping through their flues, but now the industry is becoming much more aware of these issues.”

The cost of installing the equipment depends on bakery size, although it is recommended for use in bakeries with more than four ovens and gross burner capacity of over 320kW.

The MIWE eco: nova will be available worldwide from next week, following its launch at the Suedback Bakery and Confectionery Trade Fair, taking place in Stuttgart from 18 to 21 October.

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