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Tetra Pak: Mixing innovation for protein-enriched products
Partner Content

Partner Content

4 June 2024

Tetra Pak: Mixing innovation for protein-enriched products

With increasing consumer demand for foods with functional and nutritional benefits, protein-enriched products have become one of the hottest trends in beverages and liquid foods. For F&B brands looking to expand their portfolio, seizing this growing market opportunity can be a smart choice. The decision may be easy, but the processes involved are often less straightforward. Mixing, in particular, can pose complex challenges since high-protein ingredients are susceptible to foaming. Unwanted foaming in a mixer can disrupt production and compromise the quality of the products – in some cases leading to expensive losses. So, how do you take advantage of today’s popular market for protein-enriched products while ensuring reliable, profitable production? Tetra Pak, a company with a long history of developing mixing solutions, set out to answer exactly that question. The result was the Tetra Pak Industrial Protein Mixer, a unique technology designed specifically for this growing segment. Air: The sworn enemy of protein processors In order to prevent foaming, it’s important to understand what causes it in the first place. In this case, identifying the culprit is simple. Air, in combination with agitation during mixing, causes powdered protein ingredients to froth, creating foaming challenges. The key, then, is to minimise air intake in the mixer to the greatest extent possible. Of course, this is easier said than done. How do you eliminate something that is ever-present in a production environment? A combination of innovations To address these challenges, experts at Tetra Pak considered how to modify a conventional protein mixer. The first step was to limit air’s ability to enter the equipment. They accomplished this with a purpose-designed powder intake system that reduces air incorporation, along with a unique inlet that introduces liquid more gently to limit the volume of air. Further innovations were added inside the tank. A new agitator design was developed, which reduces vortex and, as a result, the amount of air that is drawn into the product during mixing. This is complemented by a sensor-based system and smart automation that automatically adjusts vacuum intensity if foaming begins to take place. Lastly, since gentler mixing can result in undissolved powder, a patented filter outlet catches any remaining lumps to ensure high product quality. Thanks to this unique combination of features, the Tetra Pak Industrial Protein Mixer can ensure virtually foamless processing of liquid protein products. Want to better understand how it works? Visit Tetra Pak to learn more.

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