3 ways to achieve maximum productivity and flexibility in gummy production
posted on 15 July, 2021 by Edward Smagarinsky - Group Product Manager (Mogul)
Growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4% between 2016 and 2022, the global gummy candy market has entered an era of endless opportunities for manufacturers wishing to expand their market share. 1The challenge now lies in keeping pace with ever-evolving consumer preferences, and delivering new, on-trend products to retailers’ shelves as quickly as possible to stand out in crowded market place.
From manufacturing to packaging, increasing flexibility and efficiency is essential to achieving the desired result. In this blog, we discuss how the latest equipment solutions address producers’ complex needs:
1. Increased Flexibility in Starch Moulding
Starch moulding technology allows manufacturers to create a wide array of product types with a single piece of machinery. Highly versatile, it enables the production of jellies and gummies in all manner of formats, sizes and shapes — while also providing the flexibility to process other confectionery masses, such as liquorice, fondant cream and marshmallow foam.
The depositing process delivers multiple opportunities to accommodate various product types and colours. The pumps are often available in a range of piston diameters and configurations, suiting different recipes — from light aerated mass to heavy liquid-based syrups. Meanwhile, other pump variations are designed to deposit single colour or side-by-side colour articles. This is in addition to centre-fill, layered and striped confections. Implementing starch moulding technology will allow gummy manufacturers to meet all consumer needs without compromise, reduce production overlaps and increase efficiency.
2. Adding the finishing touch
The latest innovations in seasoning technology mean that confectionery products can be sugar coated automatically, increasing production speeds, while also improving yield. Conventional sugar coating techniques involve passing a moulded jelly through a steam bath and then running it through a curtain of sugar in a tumble drum. A more recipe-driven approach, however, demonstrates that tacking agents, applied at a very specific rate via specialised coating equipment, allow the coating of a gummy without drenching it. A controlled delivery can then be used to bring the sugar or citric acid powder into a small tumble drum. The result is a shorter retention time with improved product quality. The process also gives manufacturers greater flexibility in flavour application, since dry ingredients, or even flavoured tacking agents, can be added at a specific rate to cater to different consumer preferences.
3. Packaging made easy
Selecting effective bagging technology that maximises packaging speed and product throughput can go a long way in meeting rising demand for gummy candy. Vertical form fill and seal (VFFS) equipment, for example, enables rapid and easy bagging of a wide variety of confectionery types, including gummies. Next generation solutions can even package products at speeds of over 250 bags per minute, provided that all elements of the packaging line can achieve similar output levels. These systems also reduce waste through the incorporation of stripper tube closures, which ensure high seal integrity. This is especially crucial for sugar coated gummies, whereby the sugar can often hamper seal quality. The latest VFFS equipment also supports manufacturers in meeting ever-evolving consumer needs. For example, smaller, convenient bags are gaining popularity as people around the world live healthier, but increasingly busy lifestyles. Traditionally, producers require varying equipment and components that must be changed between each production run to offer different bag sizes. Next generation VFFS technology, however, has been designed with flexibility in mind. No mechanical adjustments are needed when changing product or film, and digital data settings have been incorporated into the systems for rapid product or pack changes. Additionally, these systems offer a wide range of bag size options.
Preparing for growth
Adapting quickly to emerging consumer and market trends is crucial for gummy producers to not just retain or gain market share, but keep the momentum of growth in the industry too. Flexible processing and packaging equipment are effective solutions that allow manufacturers to create gummy products in all shapes, formats and sizes efficiently. Selecting the right piece of equipment that supports producers’ unique and often complex needs is, however, crucial to achieving the desired result and providing peace of mind. With decades of experience and in-depth technical know-how, tna can help gummy manufacturers increase the flexibility of their processes and maximise efficiency.
1Global Data, Gums and jellies 5-year growth (2017-2021)