Best-buy cookies

Choc Chip Homestyle Cookies: flour (thiamine), milk chocolate (sugar, cocoa mass, milk solids, cocoa butter, emulsifiers, flavours, dark compounded chocolate (sugar, vegetable fat, cocoa powder, emulsifier [soy lecithin, 492]), sugar, brown sugar, butter, margarine, preservative, antioxidant, vitamins, flavour, colour (beta carotene), egg, water, raising agent, natural flavour

Shelf Life: 10 months

Brand Owner: FoodWorks

Brand/product manager: Amanda Swanell


Packaging supplier: Litho Superpak

Graphic packaging designer: Hayes Berry Tehan

Improved cool room performance

It is imperative that hygiene be maintained in refrigeration systems throughout the supply chain.

AerisGuard technology, the residual actions of which prevent colonisation of cool room surfaces for extended periods, can help.

A complete remediation and preventive treatment can:

• improve airflow

• reduce cool room energy usage by up to 10%, and

• increase shelf life and reduce spoilage through increased indoor air quality.

Typical refrigeration systems continuously recirculate unfiltered air through the forced draught coolers (FDCs).

This exposes the coil of the FDC to high levels of contamination.

When combined with the natural condensation that forms on the FDC the system becomes contaminated.

This contamination builds up gradually and exists unnoticed deep inside the unit.


A biofilm can be broadly defined as an aggregation of micro-organisms that have established contact with a surface and between each other by expressing polymeric substances.

Micro-organisms commonly go through stages of attachment, growth and dispersal to develop complex structures that have been described as ‘slime cities’.

Biofilms form at many surfaces but one of the most common is where water is in contact with a solid surface, as the two requirements for biofilm growth are the presence of micro-organisms and moisture.

Examples of this are dental plaque or the slippery coating on a rock.

The AerisGuard treatments consist of biocides that are impregnated into slow-release polymers that provide six months of residual protection against continuous microbial growth.

The polymers slowly dissolve in the moisture provided on the surfaces to release a trace amount of biocide.

This biocide actively prevents the formation of biofilm in:

• large scale refrigerated warehouses/ facilities of all shapes and sizes

• refrigerated trucks, and

• refrigerated sea-freight containers.

Chocolate milk proved to satisfy

Chocolate milk is more satisfying than soft drink without having any adverse effect on appetite at the next meal, according to scientific research published in the British Journal of Nutrition.

The randomised cross-over trial was conducted on 22 healthy young men of normal weight.

Each was given a 500ml drink of chocolate milk or cola 30 minutes before lunch, at which they were free to eat as much they wished.

Both the chocolate milk drink and the cola drink supplied 900kJ of energy.

The men were asked to report on their satiety and fullness 30 minutes after the drink.

Both satiety and fullness were significantly higher for the chocolate milk than the cola soft drink, although both drinks delivered the same amount of energy.

Researchers believe possible factors for increased satiety include milk’s higher protein content, low glycaemic index, viscosity and cocoa powder content.

To read the abstract of the paper, click here.

To order a copy of the paper from the British Journal of Nutrition, click here.

For further info on dairy products, visit

Meat portioner aids food safety

Food Processing Equipment is the sole distributor in Australia and New Zealand of US-based manufacturer Stork Townsend’s advanced, low-pressure portioning machine.

The new portioning technology is an alternative to the traditional method of forming.

The RevoPortioner can portion whole muscle meat into many natural shapes, while maintaining consistent size and weight.

The technology used by the RevoPortioner retains the original properties of the whole muscle, such as bite, structure and visual appeal.

This piece of equipment will allow the food industry to introduce new poultry, pork, red meat, fish and vegetable products to the market.

Products will retain their typical shape and weight leading to less non-conformity, consistent cooking times and improved food safety.

Able to process meat mixtures either in dough form or as whole muscle, the RevoPortioner is capable of producing a wide variety of product shapes and sizes, such as fillets, tenders, nuggets, patties, fingers and popcorn.

It is also suitable for traditional meat dough formed products, such as nuggets and patties.

Key innovation

Innovative technology and food processing equipment solutions are anticipated to be coming out of Key Technology in the near future with the appointment of Richard Hebel as Chief Technology Officer.

Key Technology is a supplier of equipment for preparing raw foods for further processing as well as optical sorters that remove defective product and foreign material, and vibratory conveyors that safely transport goods.

In this role, Hebel will be responsible for identifying and commercialising advanced new technologies that will expand Key’s range of customer product solutions while engaging new opportunities for corporate growth and diversification.

“The appointment of Rich to this new position is a clear indication of Key’s commitment to developing break-through innovations — this is a very important strategic initiative for Key,” Key Technology chief executive officer David Camp said.

“With Rich’s technology background, big-picture perspective, and business development expertise, he’s ideally suited to take the lead in extending our technology leadership into new arenas.”

Hebel brings more than 30 years of business experience to his position at Key.

Driving nutrition and health

Under the slogan ‘connecting nutrition and health’, three ingredients suppliers will now exist under a new Functional Food Unit, the BENEO group, a section of Südzucker AG.

Orafti, Palatinit and Remy will now be known as BENEO-Orafti S.A., BENEO-Palatinit GmbH and BENEO-Remy N.V.

With an emphasis on multi-disciplinary expertise, BENEO aims to support food manufacturers in all phases of product development, right up to product launch, helping to develop balanced, healthy and functional food products.

There will be no changes to addresses, telephone numbers and VAT numbers.

NZ food sector remains strong

Leone Evans

New Zealand’s (NZ’s) food and beverage industry, including agribusiness, primary production and foodservice, is critical to the country’s overall economic performance.

As such, any changes in the food and beverage industry’s performance will materially impact on the national economy.

At present, the sector employs one in five New Zealanders.

It generates half of NZ’s mercantile exports, comprises 10% of gross domestic product and has grown 5.3% over the past decade (the same rate as the overall economy).

The productivity of the food and beverage industry is better than that of many other sectors, with agriculture having achieved a 60% increase in the last decade.

The sector itself capitalises on NZ’s natural advantages in food production including abundant rainfall, a temperate climate and the plentiful supply of arable land.

However, growth has come largely from productivity gains.

The sector faces the challenge of developing stronger technology and knowledge-based businesses and, as a result, will continue to be characterised as a basic agricultural industry until improvement is gained via increased research and development.

Industry at a glance

Like the economy as a whole, the food and beverage sector exhibits low capital intensity, relatively low levels of research and development investment, skill shortages, low levels of outbound foreign investment and limited access to global value chains.

The sector is dominated by co-operatives, comprising four of the five largest companies and accounting for over 50% of the total sector revenues.

Fonterra alone constitutes 40% of total sector revenue, the top 10 companies comprise 66%, the top 30 companies over 85% and subsidiaries of foreign owned multinationals constitute 24% of total sector revenues. Small-to-medium enterprises make up the remaining 25% of the industry.

International market

In terms of the international market environment, NZ’s food and beverage industry is facing rapid change with greater demand for products that foster wellbeing, meal solutions rather than just ingredients, and a greater emphasis on ethical and ecological standards.

Consumers and retailers have become more attuned to food safety issues, in terms of health concerns and food security, resulting in a convergence of food and health. Consumption patterns are also changing due to an ageing population in the West and an increasingly affluent Asia.

These changes are resulting in the acceleration of market segmentation as trade in processed products outstrips trade in bulk commodities.

In the UK, New Zealand’s fifth largest export market, environmental sustainability and ethical issues including fair trade, free-range and organic have gained increasing dominance on the public’s agenda.

This trend is also gaining momentum in some European markets and has the potential to extend to other parts of the globe.

Rising concerns over climate change have been linked to the food miles debate, which suggests the further a product has travelled the greater its environmental impact.

Retailers such as Tesco have announced that within the next five years labels on packaging will display a product’s carbon footprint. At present, this issue does not seem to have affected NZ’s trade with the UK. However, NZ exporters will need to carefully monitor and appropriately react to these important social issues and their potential impact on both trade and consumer purchasing decisions.


New Zealand has already established itself globally as environmentally conscious, particularly in food production, and its ability to effectively communicate this message and position to the international market will become increasingly important.

As a result of the global food industry consolidating into fewer and larger multinationals wielding the power of fewer and larger brands, NZ businesses will need to connect more effectively with global value chains in order to succeed in the international market.

In order to do this, the NZ food and beverage sector, which continues to be constrained by insufficient investment and expertise, requires more skilled workers and spending on research and development.

Food and Beverage Taskforce

In July this year, the NZ Government announced it’s response to the Food and Beverage Taskforce’s report Smart Food, Cool Beverage, which outlined the challenges and opportunities faced by the sector and the industry’s outlook, and committed to a work program of six key initiatives including $19 million for in-market assistance for the sector offshore.

The Government’s response also included improved infrastructure for new product development to help test and develop innovative food products, increasing the business capability of food and beverage exporters through an audit and mentoring program, and raising productivity and sustainability in pastoral industries.


New Zealand Trade and Enterprise will continue its involvement in the food and beverage innovation process, both in terms of product development and in-market infrastructure development, fostering an even closer working relationship with industry, universities, crown research institutes and Technology NZ.

Raising the international profile of the sector is also a critical element that will underpin sector growth in selected markets.

Looking forward, New Zealand Trade and Enterprise will strive to protect and renew the core of the industry including agribusiness core competency, bio-security, food safety, market access, production efficiency gains, and improved productivity, while continuing to build the base.

Colour coding for safety

More than 1.4km of colour coded water and air pipes were installed to supply processing equipment such as soy bean tanks and pneumatic machinery at the Fortune Soy facility in Padstow, NSW, a leading manufacturer of soy food products.

The initial installation commenced service in early 2005 and has been expanded and changed on an ongoing basis as production needs change.

Typically weighing eight times less than steel, CalAir Air-Pro and Water-Pro pipe systems are reusable, relocatable, and recyclable, as well as being permanently colour-coded for safety according to the gases and liquids they carry.

The system is typically three to four times quicker to install than traditional pipe lines.

Fortune Soy managing director Henry Aw was impressed by the flexibility of the pipes.


Fortune Soy’s pneumatic pipe systems are coloured aqua and the Water-Pro pipes are coloured green in accordance with Australian Standard 1345-1995.

The other CalAir Systems are coded beige for gas, red for fire services, violet for acids and alkalines, brown for oil and black for waste.

“The initial installation commenced service in early 2005 and has been expanded and changed on an ongoing basis as production needs change,” said Fortune Soy managing director Henry Aw.

“In that time I have found that the pipe systems are inherently efficient and any problems are easy to fix.”

The non-corrosive, low-friction internal bore of the polymer pipelines means they will neither damage expensive tools by depositing particulates into the airstream, nor waste compressor energy by inhibiting air flow with the rust build-ups that can strangle traditional systems.

Maintaining the pipes is easy and safe for production workers because the permanent colours immediately identify the contents of the pipes they are working with.

In coming years, many existing traditional pipe systems may need to be replaced in the face of evolving health, safety and environmental regulations, such as those contained in the Australian Occupation Health and Safety Act.

This situation is mirrored in many international markets as an increasing trend.

Attractive alternative

CalAir introduced its colour-coded polymer pipe systems as an alternative to imported systems that typically costed more than twice as much.

The pipe systems are an increasingly attractive alternative to traditional steel pipe systems because they can provide a reduction of 40% in frictional losses and the high sealing efficiency to further reduce energy costs.

The piping system is a totally integrated system, with a comprehensive range of joints, cross-pieces, elbows, fasteners and fittings.

Unlike metal welded systems, which frequently have to be junked when production facilities change location, the CalAir system can be dismantled, cleanly packed away and reconverted to a new use.

Available in sizes from half-inch to four-inch nominal bore (12.5mm-100mm), the sizes involved in the Fortune Soy installation were:

• Air-Pro: A2 (25mm), A3 (32mm), A4 (40mm)

• Water-Pro: W4 (40mm)

CalAir has been recognised by the Australian Government with an Export Achievement Award in 1995 and accepted into the Government-sponsored Australian Technology Showcase in 2002 as a company with new and innovative products capable of achieving world markets.

CalAir also won the Manufacturers Monthly Endeavour Innovative Product Award for 2007.

Educational marketing

Nestle has embarked on another marketing strategy, this time aimed at improving children’s reading abilities.

The company is encouraging children to read by including books in specially marked packets of Cheerios.

Each packet will include one of three adventure-packed short stories adapted from the film The Golden Compass.

Packs of Nesquik will also carry Golden Compass adventure devices to help children bring their own adventures to life.

Golden Compass books will be available with the purchase of specially marked packs of Cheerios from 11th November, 2007.

The promotion will last through January 2008.

Calcium fortification in ice cream

Aquamin F, a naturally derived seaweed mineral, was evaluated as a calcium fortification agent in a 10% fat ice cream application against a non-fortified control in an independent study carried out by Leatherhead Food International.

Overall, it was concluded that the differences between the control and test ice creams were small and that Aquamin F was suitable as a calcium fortification agent in ice cream.

Potential advantages of incorporation of Aquamin F in ice cream included:

• Calcium fortification

• Firmer texture than the control

• Good mouthfeel characteristics

• No visible ice crystal formation after heat¬shock in comparison with control

• Smooth appearance

• Acceptable flavour characteristics

• Slower melting characteristics

For further information, click here.

Tailor-made vitamin premixes

The market for functional foods is growing.

The fortification of food and drinks with micro-nutrients offer consumers important benefits: a healthy diet combined with convenience.

SternVitamin, a member of the Stern-Wywiol Gruppe, develops and produces vitamin and mineral premixes that are tailor-made to customer requirements.

Its premix plants for high-quality ingredients and food supplements in Germany has three fully automatic blending lines with the latest process control and visual display equipment, enabling it to handle throughputs from 100 to 6000kg/hour.

At the beginning of 2008, a modern pharmaceutical-type container blending plant is expected to be commissioned in a new, independent extension to the factory.

Custom-made solutions

As opposed to offering standard products, SternVitamin’s research department develops each vitamin and mineral mixture individually and tests it thoroughly for use in relevant foods.

When making up new premixes, attention is given to synergisms between nutrients and also to cost-effectiveness and optimum processing characteristics of the products.


In applications technology, interdisciplinary cooperation with the Stern-Wywiol Gruppe forms the basis of a high level of innovation.

Its modern Technology Centre, recently enlarged to an area of more than 2000 square-metres, houses a vitamin and micro-nutrient laboratory, a trial bakery, enzyme and milk laboratories, and technical trials departments for delicatessen specialties, meat and lipids.

Blow Thru Sieve improves quality

Russell Finex’s Blow Thru Sieve check-screens dry, free-flowing powders and granular materials without disrupting processing lines.

Inserted directly within vacuum or pressure pneumatic conveying lines, product is conveyed under pressure into the sieve through a tangential inlet ensuring high throughput rates are achieved with minimal pressure losses.

Three applications where the Blow Thru Sieve is most effective are:

1. Check-screening incoming ingredients during tanker unloading to ensure down stream processes are free from contamination.

2. Screening materials while they are pneumatically conveyed at any point throughout the production process.

3. Screening product before it is dispatched, ensuring customers received contamination-free products.

The Blow Thru Sieve eliminates the needs for auxillary equipment such as cyclone receivers, airlocks, receiving hoppers and blowers that are generally required when using standard atmospheric pressure sieving units.

Coopers does well from foreign beer

Coopers Brewery has announced a record $19.5 million profit for the 2006-07 financial year on the back of growing beer sales in Australia and overseas.

The result represents a 53.5% increase over the 2005-06 profit of $12.7 million, although that figure was impacted by costs associated with the defence of the attempted takeover bid by Lion Nathan in 2005.

Coopers Managing Director, Dr Tim Cooper, said turnover in 2006-07 had reached a record $141 million, 8.2% above the $130 million in 2005-06.

Cooper said much of the company’s strong performance nationally could be attributed to the efforts of Coopers’ distribution company, Premium, which is responsible for distribution across Australia, apart from South Australia and the Northern Territory. Premium Beverages is majority owned by Coopers.

Premium Beverages also distributes Budweiser in Australia as a result of an agreement with Anheuser-Busch.

The Budweiser range was supplemented in October last year with the introduction of Michelob ULTRA, a world-recognised premium beer.

Handling bulk ingredients

When it comes to bulk storing ingredients, manufacturers must be able to integrate a system into their production areas seamlessly and efficiently. Celia Johnson speaks to Matcon Pacific business development director David Newell.

Q. What are the main trends in ingredients handling?

A. The method of preparing a batch, which normally involves the decanting of numer­ous 25kg bags and manually scooping minor ingredients, is usually very labour intensive.

Therefore, automating the formulation of the ingredients to prevent operator error and provide batch traceability is a significant trend.

There is also a trend away from decanti­ng raw materials from bags and towards receiving the pre-mixed ingredients in bulk from the supplier, which not only makes the plant more efficient but reduces the manu­facturing cost per kilogram.

Q. What are the main challenges associated with handling and storing ingredients?

A. Reducing dust contamination in the pro­duction area is a major concern and challenge when it comes to handling and storing ingre­dients.

The use of traditional bulk storage sys­tems, such as bulk bags, is the main cause of the problem.

The bags are often left sitting on the floor of a warehouse, become contaminated with dirt from the floor and are then taken into the production area for processing, placing the product at risk of contamination.

Suppliers of bulk storage systems are also challenged to provide manufacturers with systems that can easily be integrated into the production area while also providing inter-company transportation of pre-mixed products.

The bulk storage system needs to ensure the ingredients or premixed products are dis­charged efficiently in a contained way, without traditional flow problems such as segregation of a pre-mixed batch, bridging or rat-holing.

Q. How are these challenges being over­come?

A. Ingredients manufacturers may choose to incorporate a closed-system approach, com­bining a typical packaging system such as a CHEP or TNT container with a compatible hopper design that can be discharged or dosed into the production mixer.

Similarly, an Intermediate Bulk Container system (IBC) could be used for this purpose.

Once the container or IBC has been dis­charged it can be cleaned off-line or trans­ported back to be filled.

Q. What are the latest innovations and equip­ment that will benefit manufacturers?

A. Operator errors in ingredient preparation can be prevented and product recalls low­ered with an automated or semi-automated approach to ingredient formulation.

By using an IBC to discharge the product automatically, not only is the loading of the mixer simplified but the availability of the mixer for mixing more batches is increased, as compared with manual loading.

The IBC is loaded onto a discharge station above the mixer and will discharge the for­mulated batch in a controlled and hygienic manner.

The discharge station incorporates a pneu­matic actuator and an internal vibration to provide guaranteed discharge of even the most difficult flowing products.

The Matcon Flexi-Batch recipe formula­tion system is a way of formulating the batch to a known recipe by using a moving batch container located under the ingredients.

The ingredients can easily be changed or increased according to the production demands.

The Variable-Lift Matcon Discharge Hop­per provides a high accuracy dosing of the ingredient, typically down to 50g in a 100kg batch, while being a single machine cuts down on cleaning time.

Matcon’s IBCs are manufactured from FDA-approved polyethylene material and incorporate cone valve technology.

RVO supplies Matcon equipment in Aus­tralia.

Coles announces salt policy

Coles will be discussing its salt reduction policy in public for the first time at the Australian Divsion of World Action on Salt and Health’s (AWASH) salt reduction and children event on 31st January 2008.

The Chair of the UK Food Standards Agency, Dame Deirdre Hutton, will be talking about the UK government salt reduction strategy.

ABC health correspondent, Norman Swan, will be chairing a debate.

Representatives from the manufacturing and catering sectors of the food industry will also be invited to participate.

More details on the event will be given closer to the date.

On the shelf: organic salad

Ingredients: Organic Salad Mix: seasonal baby leaf salads; red and green oak, red and green coral, mignonette, red chard and mizuna

Shelf life: 10 days

Brand/product manager: Steve Skopilianos


Packaging supplier: Biopak

Graphics package designer: Dzign Diezel Group

Manufacturer cuts emissions

Food manufacturers are increasingly feeling the effects of climate change, including the rising cost of ingredients.

As such, it is becoming more vital that the food industry does its part to cut carbon emissions.

Australian-owned Spiral Foods recently demonstrated its commitment to the environment and support for food producers, announcing it has become 100% climate neutral.

Working with neutralising company Climate Friendly, Spiral Foods’ carbon emissions were calculated, including electricity, air travel, car and truck use, car rentals and taxis, paper and freight.

An equivalent value of gold standard carbon credits have been invested in renewable energy generation.

“We have worked with Climate Friendly to invest in globally-recognised gold standard carbon credits, supporting projects that work toward displacing polluting energy sources like coal usage,” Spiral Foods director James Wilson said.

“We feel this is the most effective way we can take action to stop global warming and protect our food future.”

Now in the next stage of their climate change policy, Spiral Foods is also committed to investigating and implementing ongoing energy efficiency measures for its Sydney and Melbourne offices and warehouse operations, and believe this is one of the most important parts of reducing the company’s overall environmental impact.


Spiral Foods:

Climate Friendly:

HACCP certification and testing equipment

HACCP director Martin Stone gives reasons as to why food manufacturers should become HACCP certified, including barriers to implementing a program and auditing no-nos, and identifies developments in food safety equipment.

Top 5 reasons to be HACCP certified

1. External verification

Certification is a clear declaration that a food manufacturer maintains stringent food safety standards.

2. Verification can open up markets for distribution

Many companies will not buy from a manufacturer unless they are HACCP certified.

3. Achievement and recognition for the business

4. Increased export potential

5. Reduced risk of costly food recalls and foodborne illness

Top 5 barriers to implementing a HACCP program

1. Time

2. Technical ability

3. No buy-in (mandate) from senior management to put it in place

4. Getting support

5. A poorly written, non-practical system

If a system is not practical, common sense and easy to use it will not work. Companies should get HACCP systems professionally developed.

Top 5 HACCP auditing no-nos

1. Being unprepared

Documentation should be ready for the auditor.

2. Having a dirty facility

Sites should be clean and have no obvious pest problems.

3. False or missing records

4. Misleading documentation that does not reflect actual practices

5. HACCP systems that are not maintained

Top 5 developments in food safety technology

1. Improved instrumentation

2. Data loggers to record temperatures

3. Automation of factory equipment

4. Rapid microbiological testing methods

5. Allergen detection systems

Foodborne illness

HACCP director Martin Stone identifies the Top 5s of foodborne illness.

Top 5 foodborne bacteria

1. Salmonella species

2. Listeria monocytogenes

3. Campylobacter jejuni

4. Escherichia coli

5. Norovirus

Top 5 causes of foodborne illness

1. Incomplete cooking (kill-step)

2. Poor refrigeration

Failure to store food at the correct temperature throughout the supply chain.

3. Food cooling rate

Some food is left warm for too long.

4. Cross contamination

5. Poor hygiene

Workers who have a foodborne illness or touch their face and hair can contaminate product.

Top 5 measures for preventing foodborne illness

1. Appropriate controls

Companies should implement a HACCP program and follow it.

2. Put appropriate controls in place for key processes including cooking and cooling

HACCP will ensure this but if a company does not have a HACCP program, these measures still need to be implemented.

3. Personal hygiene

Ensure workers maintain high standards

4. Suppliers’ practises

Suppliers should comply with food-safe standards. Once the manufacture has an effective and safe system in place, the biggest risk to the business is from suppliers.

Avoid buying from those without food safety credentials.

5. Cleaning and sanitising processing areas and equipment.

This is of the utmost importance.

Food safety issues

HACCP director Martin Stone identifies the five top food safety issues facing Australia’s food manufacturers.

1. Foodborne illness

Incidences are increasing in Australia at exponential rates due to better reporting systems, greater awareness and reporting of incidences, and changing dietary habits including the move towards more complex, processed foods and eating out.

Food is also travelling further for longer periods of time.

Increased handling of food in a longer distribution chain means more opportunity for food safety to be challenged.

2. Importing food

This can be a risky business, especially if food is being imported from countries that do not have food safety controls.

While food production and imports from China and India, for example, may keep costs down, the controls in these countries differ from those in Australia.

There needs to be appropriate food safety controls during the manufacturing stage.

3. Uniformity in laws and requirements

Not all food processors have a food safety program in place.

There is no uniform government mandate saying something needs to be in place.

While there is the Food Standards Code, there is a lack of understanding of the Code’s requirements.

4. Pest control

There are potential food safety risks when dealing with chemicals on-site.

Both the chemicals themselves and their ability to lose potency can contribute to the risk of contamination.

5. Poor auditing

There is a large variation in the skill and ability of non-HACCP auditors in determining real food safety issues.

Some auditors are too focused on minor issues within documentation and as a result they lose site of what is actually important: making food safe.

This situation results in companies looking good on paper but being less good in terms of their manufacturing facilities and practices.