Improving efficiency in a specialty baked product line

Paul Heinz Heinemann, C. T. Morrow, Henry Joseph Sommer, III

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A systems analysis was performed on a baked apple product line in a fruit processing plant. The purpose of the analysis was to determine the energy usage of the processing line and to improve productivity through automation. The energy usage audit focused on the baking oven within the line, since the oven consumed more energy than other component. The possibility of replacing the gas oven with a microwave oven was explored. Results of the audit show that although the oven is 30 years old, it is reasonably energy efficient and replacing it would not be cost-effective. Electrical energy usage was 0.192 MJ/kg (82.54 Btu/lb) of baked product and gas energy usage was 0.139 MJ/kg (59.75 Btu/lb) of baked product, neither of which was considered to be excessive. The biggest need identified within the plant was for automation since the company currently faces a decreasing labor pool. Several suggestions for automating line components were provided.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)587-592
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Engineering in Agriculture
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 1991

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Engineering


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