The importance of the flour milling industry was never more apparent than this past spring when the global coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic led to a surge in demand for retail flour for home use in many parts of the world as governments ordered non-essential businesses such as restaurants to close and citizens to shelter in place in an effort to slow the spread of the virus.

As has been the case throughout history in times of crisis, inexpensive and durable grain-based foods such as flour have been in high demand during this pandemic, going on its ninth month with no end in sight.

Throughout this crisis, equipment suppliers who serve the milling industry have continued to introduce new technology that makes flour production more efficient and improves the quality and safety of the end product. Some of these breakthroughs are typically on display at the annual International Association of Operative Millers (IAOM) Conference & Expo, but this year’s event was canceled because of the pandemic.

Here’s a look at the innovative products that would have been displayed at this year’s expo in Portland, Oregon, US, had the event not been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

AlPesa milling system

Bühler recently introduced AlPesa, a compact and complete milling system for whole wheat atta flour and flour from sorghum.

The system has a throughput of up to 18 tons per day, offers a high level of food safety, and produces a wide range of flour qualities. The AlPesa combines different modules — for feeding, grinding, sifting, bagging, pneumatic conveying and automation.

The switch cabinet of the AlPesa contains the power electronics and an integrated touchscreen to operate the system. The AlPesa can be operated and monitored from various devices, including smartphones, tablets and personal computers.

It is a compact version of Bühler’s PesaMill milling system, which has been operating worldwide since 2017. The AlPesa replaces traditional chakki stone mills, producing authentic whole wheat atta flour for chapatis, rotis, puris and other flatbreads.

Dante wheat scrubbing technology

Dante // Photo courtesy of Omas.

Omas’ new Dante wheat scrubbing technology decreases microbial count, toxin levels, chemical residue and tempering time.

The system utilizes unique flow placement along with upgrades to traditional scouring/debranning technologies to increase flour safety, reduce wheat ash, and improve overall performance of the mill while maintaining or improving flour performance.

Technical features include:

  • Internal rotor with eight abrasive elements
  • Internal body with perforated plate with adjustable reinforces
  • Inspection doors
  • Outlet with electrical control by ammeter
  • Cooling fan on the machine
  • Body of welded steel and painted with epoxy for food equipment
  • Electric motor with ammeter
  • Control panel to adjust the parameters of abrasion.

Omas said a decade’s experience has led to the development of “Dante,” with eight machining wheels and an electro-mechanical actuator managed by plc that allows you to decide how long the product remains in the machine.

Summit Sieve

Summit Sieve // Photo courtesy of Great Western Manufacturing.

Great Western’s new Summit Sieve frame and tray combine strength and simplicity with a larger net screen area per stack than previous sieves.

The new design features a minimal number of fasteners, each of which has strategically been positioned to eliminate risks of contamination. Removal of gaskets results in interlocking trays and sieves, while retaining stability and preventing leaks.

Summit Sieves feature food grade plastic and stainless-steel pan; increased net sieve area; a stronger design with fewer parts; aluminum trays that interlock with sieve below and above to prevent outward bowing; columns that create strength throughout the stack and prevent downward deflections; increased sanitation, and more.


SightTrap // Photo courtesy of Insects Limited.

Insects Limited has introduced SightTrap, a pheromone monitoring device that puts cameras on insect traps and provides essential information and data on your computer or smart phone.

The device provides detailed reporting in which you can monitor traps, view pre-identified insects and see trending data. The device automatically records a daily image of the pheromone trap.

The ForesightIPM app shows and counts the insects in your trap. This pest management method involves less time and fewer steps, according to Insects Limited.

Each kit includes:

  • A SightTrap camera
  • Two lithium batteries
  • A battery charger
  • A glueboard and pheromone lure
  • SightTrap hangers
  • All access to ForesightIPM with unlimited users.

Differential Dosing Scale

GRANO // Photo courtesy of Swisca.

As a mass flow controller, the Grano differential dosing scale manufactured by Swisca precisely doses a pre-selected quantity of product and registers the total weight in grams.

The differential dosing scale precisely serves as a mass flow meter for the accurate measuring of a given product flow.

For a constant and exact measure of grain mixtures, the differential dosing scale is used below silos, raw production bins and tempering bins.

For grain processing in a continuously operating setting, accurate measurement and exact regulation are made possible by innovative drive and measurement technology. The differential dosing scale GRANO is suitable for weight-oriented measurement of quantity, performance-oriented process control and recipe-oriented mixtures.

The flow quantity of a free-flowing product is precisely determined, the capacity is precisely regulated, and the total weight is accurately recorded. An extraordinarily robust control system with touchscreen along the precise measuring cells used in Swisca dosing scales guarantee the highest quality and reliability.

Roll measuring device

rollCare // Photo courtesy of Yenar.

Yenar’s latest innovation at its research and development center is the rollCare Profile Measurement Device, which utilizes laser technology to check fluted roll profiles while fluting and also on the roller mills.

After measurement, millers can compare stats by overlapping automatically the measured profile and the theoretical one to see if there are deviations. The device measures the sharp angle, dull angle, land, depth, bottom radius and grinding surface area.

With rollCare, you can easily and quickly determine the optimal time to change the rolls.

The device features a wireless connection, user-friendly interface and there is no limit for the diameter range.