Traditional wood smoking takes a long time to complete per batch of product and involves high levels of manual labour, so it can be difficult to recreate cost-effectively on a large scale.
The new in-line smoking technology can be based on either smoke condensate or incorporate traditional smoke from wood chips. It is produced using the bespoke CookStar, GEA’s leading spiral oven.
In a world first, GEA has been able to incorporate in-line smoking into a spiral oven, enabling it to supply primary smoke condensate into the cooking process. Purified smoke was generated during the in-line cooking process, resulting in clean label smoked cooked products, GEA said.
Increased productivity and consistent quality
Integrated into the latest version of its CookStar oven, its smoking solution allowed food processors to increase productivity and deliver consistent quality by circumventing rack ovens and long, labour-intensive batch smoking processes, it claimed.
In partnership with smoking specialist Red Arrow, GEA has developed the SuperHeatSmoke, based on an atomized smoke generator with nozzles integrated into the CookStar. These are used to create a smoke cloud and smoking environment using purified smoke condensate.
The process takes 25-120 minutes depending on the application. The quicker process meant less moisture was lost from the product, boosting final yields, GEA said. The products are smoked as they are being cooked, further saving time along the line.
Opportunities for innovation