Snack Food

Industry: Snack food
Customer: Major manufacturer of flavored nuts

Problem: The customer’s success in the area of flavored nuts caused a need to expand the operation. The system that was being used to coat the nuts with flavoring was messy and resulted in the loss of ingredients and the contamination of the roasting process. The customer heard about APEC’s Mistcoater and wondered if the system could be used to enhance their coating process.

Solution: APEC’s technical staff set up an experimental system at the customer’s location. The main component of the system was the Mistcoater, which has the ability to apply liquids to dry solids without the use of spray nozzles. Spinning disks are used to atomize the liquid flavorings that are being applied to the nuts. The system dispenses the liquid and dry ingredients automatically by weight, so the guess work is taken out of the process for the operator. The system is also completely enclosed so much of the mess involved in the coating process is eliminated. A retention conveyor after the coating process ensures that the ingredients have time to be completely dispersed onto the nuts, for a uniform coating. The experimental system showed the customer that the coating process could be improved, and they decided to purchase a system from APEC.

Result: The customer was so impressed with the performance of the experimental system that they ordered two coating systems. One to enhance the old line and another for the new line. They have found that they have less carryover of ingredients into the downstream process which has eliminated the mess and contamination problems. As a side benefit, the customer has found that they can use 30% less flavoring.