Another key to keeping waste down is avoiding weight fluctuations.
“Scrap is not limited to side trim; it can also come from waste in over- and underweight products or those out of specification due to size or shape variance,” Mr. Riggle suggested.
To help control weight, Rheon lines come equipped with load cells in the conveyors.
“We work to hone in on the weight control,” said John Giacoio, vice-president of sales, Rheon. “Our load cells weigh it, guillotine it and then check the weight. Then it’s all sent back to the computer, which constantly makes adjustments to stay on target.”
For cookies, Franz Haas’ depositor/extruder/wirecut machine has a pair of pump rotors to eliminate weight variation across the width, said Mr. Knott. Dough chunkers and kibblers also aid in evenly distributing the dough through the hopper.
“We also pay attention to the conveyors feeding the hopper, and in most cases, we use three level sensors — one on each side and one in the center — to maintain an even pile of dough in the hopper,” he said.
At Reading, filler blocks and dies are designed with tight tolerances, according to Mr. Pallottini. “A properly designed, manufactured and fitted filler block is the key to proper dough weight,” he said. “And the next step is that the die must provide the required back pressure to stabilize the flow of the dough.”
Meanwhile, Reiser works to control cookie dough weight with its waterwheel design. “This allows accurate scaling across the depositing head,” Mr. Fontaine said.