Complete, pre or concentrated mixes?
Mixes are being sold in different ways: a
complete mix (just add water), a premix (add egg, fat, sometimes part of flour
and part of sugar) or a concentrate mix (everything needs to be added, except
the ‘chemicals’). Which type of mix to buy (if you want this) is given by
- Are there special requirements
to e.g. flour, certain improvers, enzymes, chemicals)
- Is the volume low or high
- Availability of certain
materials in the country (or nowadays even in general)
If the volumes is low and ingredients to be
used are rare it is quite normal to buy a mix that is as complete as possible:
it will prevent risks of mistakes as your time might as well not have
sufficient amount of experience; so consistency will automatically be better.
However this same complete mix might be sold to your competitor as well, so it
will be hard to differentiate and create more unique propositions.
With a higher volume or a good availability
of most ingredients one can choose for a premix; e.g. most of the sugar and
flour have been taken out. Where in a complete mix perhaps 4 sacks where used,
here 1 sack would be used and the other ‘missing’ sacks are added by simply the
missing flour, sugar, fat and/ or eggs/ milk. One of the advantages is that one
can differentiate a bit more by changing proportions or process conditions,
however it requires more skilled bakers at your production line or in the team
of technologists to understand and adapt.
Companies that already work with single
ingredients, but by manual and not automatic weighing are often faced with
mistakes due to inaccuracies or different sourcing of (on paper/ by analysis)
the same materials. This can be a reason for them to switch to either a
personalised premix or a concentrate if automation is a challenge. A
concentrate contains predominantly only functional ingredients (e.g. chemicals,
enzymes, powdered emulsifiers, hydrocolloids, etc) with a minimal amount of
‘carrier’ to prevent ‘unmixing’. We are very often looking at ranges of grammages
in stead of kilo’s, which is a challenge for some to be so accurate as well as
there might be up to 15 or 20 ingredients to be weighed so it can also be time
consuming. Lastly it can also be a means of protecting your ‘recipe’ to be
easily copied by one of your competitors.
Need to know more? Feel free to contact us!