Snack Food Moisture Applications

Moisture, Oil, & Fat/Protein Measurement to Create Instant Quality Control

Benefits of Snack Food Moisture Control

The moisture content requirements in snack food manufacturing dictate many product outcomes: taste, consistency, quality, and shelf life. Utilizing an experienced moisture reader system will allow the user to have complete control over the manufacturing process. It will reduce waste and downtime, improve plant efficiency and product quality, save energy through proper dryer control, and allow for full product inspection.  

  • Our sensor calibrations, measurement wavelengths, algorithms, and optical sensor requirements are pre-set at the factory
  • Typical accuracy is about ±0.1% moisture
  • Typical analog range is 0-10% moisture
  • The outputs can be adjusted to optimize PLC or recording requirements
  • Little to No Maintenance
  • Can be installed anywhere on the line, even at an angle
  • Made for harsh environments near ovens and sprayers
  • RS232 and Ethernet compatible for real-time control
  • Thousands of measurements per second

MoistTech offers multiple sensor options to suit your specific application needs, including the standard IR3000 series and IR-3000-F series. They are Nickel Plated for food environments where frequent washdowns occur, as it protects against corrosion and abrasion. The food-grade sensor includes a Kel-F window in place of our standard glass. Learn more about the IR3000-F sensor here

Too much or too little moisture is a concern for snack food manufacturers as some food items are actually sold by weight. Their moisture content affects most snack foods’ price and taste: too much moisture creates a stale-tasting product and contributes to mold and bacteria growth.Many snack foods, including crackers and chips, are sprayed with oil and flavorings in the production process. It is crucial to control the moisture in the snacks and the amount of oil added to ensure the best consistency and flavor of the product. Moisture can be measured in critical places along the production line to allow for changes in dryer times and prioritize product consistency. Sensors can also measure oil coatings after sprayers to check the amount of oil or flavorings being used.

Constant Return on Investment

Processing line improvements are immediately noticed once a moisture meter system is installed. Measuring moisture throughout the process provides users with the following:

  • Energy and Fuel Cost Savings
  • Consistent and Immediate Oven/Dryer Control
  • Lower Product Waste
  • Better Quality, Appearance, Stability and Shelf Life
  • Improved Product Taste and Consistency

Installation Environment

If the sensor has to be installed close to the oven outlet, where it will be susceptible to extreme heat conditions, it is necessary to cool the sensor with either air or water. Furthermore, if the sensor is located near an oil spray, cleaning the sensor’s optical window during routine cleaning is necessary.

Installing the MoistTech moisture analyzer at the exit of the ovens or close to the packaging area will allow the snack food time to stabilize while cooling. Ideally, a sensor can be installed a minute after the ovens while being several inches above the belt or screw conveyor so that a baker can continuously monitor the process and adjust the moisture content if needed. If the snacks have gone through an oil spray, installing the sensor at an angle to cut down any reflection from the oil coating is important.

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Top of the Line Solutions for Manufacturing Efficiency

MoistTech’s NIR sensor is installed in the processing area. Manufacturers can continuously monitor the moisture and oil content to adjust as needed. An ideal moisture gauge accurately detects the moisture levels at different stages of the process to allow line personnel to make changes required to avoid downtime and wasted product, creating efficiency with proficiency! Contact us today to learn more!

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