Home Americas Americas: Tortilla chip maker upgrades equipment with FOODesign system

Americas: Tortilla chip maker upgrades equipment with FOODesign system


US flour tortilla chip manufacturer, Donkey Brands LLC, has doubled production volumes by installing a new production line from FOODesign, a tna company.

The investment enables Donkey Brands to meet increased demand and boost growth by replacing an out-of-date manual process with an efficient automated system.

To optimize its production process, Donkey Brands chose to integrate FOODesign’s immerso-cook direct-fired continuous frying system to complement its pre-existing FOODesign cutting, conveying and quik-coat seasoning systems.

The company now reports a faster processing line while maintaining high product quality.

The FOODesign immerso-cook features a belt feed system that is customizable for a wide range of products including tortilla chips that minimizes the risk of product breakage while optimizing throughput speeds.

Any unpreventable waste that can result from delicate snack applications like tortilla chips is continuously discharged from the fryer by the system’s based mounted mesh conveyor.

Through its continuous oil filtration process, FOODesign’s immerso-cook keeps oil clean with particulate removal and a fresh oil infeed system.

This prevents oil from overheating and prevents harmful fatty acids and free radicals from forming, which contaminate oil and compromise the quality of the product.

Increased capacity from the immerso-cook, along with its advanced oil-filtration system, means Donkey Brands can produce more tortilla chips with significantly less downtime from changing oil.

“Our previous line was predominantly manual and included a smaller fryer, as well as more conventional conveying systems,” says Robert Tisljar, partner at Donkey Brands.

“Looking for the best way to step into the world of automation, we saw the answer in FOODesign. The aim, quite simply, was to increase production output while at the same time improving the overall quality of our products.”

Consistent flavor coverage

Seasoning is vital to a product’s overall taste, texture and appeal.

Donkey Brands installed FOODesign’s quik-coat seasoning drum to ensure uniform coating on every single tortilla chip produced.

As each type of snack product has its own set of attributes, unique product structure, surface and topography, the FOODesign quik-coat offers flexibility for the Donkey Brands range of products.

FOODesign’s quik-coat system effectively seasons uneven surfaces and gently tumbles the product, evenly dispersing the right amount of seasoning so that all Donkey Brand tortilla chips have a consistent appearance and taste.

As part of the FOODesign quik-coat installation, casters were adjoined to the system that can be pulled away from the production line – simplifying and accelerating the cleaning process.