Temperature and humidity aren’t the only things bakers try to control in the proofer. Allergens are also a major concern, and sanitary design is the next frontier for proofers.

“Looking ahead, I think the next area in which we’ll see advances will be hygiene,” said Brendon Somerfield, product line manager, JBT Corp. In an effort to simplify sanitation, JBT streamlined its proofer design. The self-stacking belt creates an isolated product zone and incorporates a water nozzle and sensor to monitor water absorption. “While JBT has made proofing simpler and more hygienic with the self-stacking belt design, we anticipate seeing changes to construction of equipment, more welding and an increased recognition for basic hygienic designs such as open profile and sloped surfaces,” Mr. Somerfield said.

Due to the very nature of the proofer’s climate and its use for yeast-raised products, Tromp Group pays close attention to the cleanability of its proofers. All are covered with stainless-steel paneling inside and feature a drainage system in the flooring to make cleaning easier.

The Kaak Group addressed requests for washdown, sanitary design proofers by offsetting the duct work from the enclosure interior wall and making it removable for easier cleaning. “The Kaak Group has delivered or will be delivering proofers in both the bread and pizza sectors to surpass the present-day bakery standards to the more stringent American Meat Institute standards,” said Ken Hagedorn, vice-president, sales, and partner, Naegele, Inc.