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Top-quality chocolate thanks to ChocoStar™

22.01.2010 The South American chocolate specialist Arcor has upgraded two of its five factories by equipping them with new ChocoStar™ molding lines with SeedMaster® TWIN tempering systems. The result of this capital investment: higher productivity at lower cost plus higher product quality. Arcor is one of South America’s most important chocolate producers. In its three chocolate factories in Argentina and its three production facilities in Brazil, Chile, and Mexico, Arcor produces choco-candies, chocolate bars, cooking chocolate, packaged chocolate products, children’s chocolate, wafers, and seasonal chocolate products such as Easter bunnies.

The Arcor Group owes its steady growth to its preparedness and determination to continuously invest in the renewal of its plants, the development of new products, and the continuing education of its personnel. The expansion of its plants and the launch of innovativ products are a true challenge for Arcor in a market demanding products and maximum food safety.

Investing in production
Arcor is aware of this challenge and is continuously busy innovating to meet it. A step along this road is the addition of two molding lines of type ChocoStar™ from Buhler Bindler in its two chocolate factories in the Argentine city of Córdoba and in Bragança Paulista in Brazil. “The molding line of Buhler Bindler possesses exactly the characteristics that we require in terms of quality, flexibility, and productivity,” says Gerardo Bertone, head of the chocolate division at Arcor Argentina, giving the reason for the company’s decision. “In addition, we relied on Buhler’s vast know-how and on the well-known support that the Buhler chocolate specialists provide before, during, and also after installation of the systems they supply.”

The lines were ordered in December of 2006. A mere 15 months later, in March 2008, the two systems were already turning out marketable products. The two molding lines have been operating successfully ever since to the entire satisfaction of Arcor.

Better products, lower costs
The two Buhler Bindler ChocoStar™ molding lines installed in the facility of Arcor are multifunctional and highly efficient. “When the two state-ofthe- art lines went into service, this enabled Arcor to appreciably enhance the quality of selected products of its chocolate range. In Argentina, the equipment turns out products such as Tofi, Cofler, and Block. In Brazil, it is applied for making chocolates such as Tortuguitas, Didon, and Twister,” says Juan Carlos Marque, who is in charge of caring for the Chocolate customers of Buhler Argentina.

The capacity of about 1200 kilograms per hour and the speed at which production can be switched over, which reduces the cost of downtimes, are but two benefits offered by these lines. “The new Buhler Bindler systems with their cutting-edge process technology allow us to increase our production accuracy,” explains Gerardo Bertone. “And in some cases, the new lines also cut expenses directly, for example by allowing the filling quantity of the chocolate bars to be proportioned with very high accuracy.” Neatly molded and glossy end products, carefully aligned on their way to the packaging line.

The new molding lines
The two new molding lines installed in the Arcor factories in Córdoba and Bragança Paulista are virtually identical. The shell lines of type ChocoStar™ each consist of a complete circulation system (mold size: 620 mm × 275 mm) for making solid chocolate products with or without ingredients (chopped or whole hazelnuts, peanuts, almonds, or pieces of biscuit) and filled articles with cream or caramel filling plus one Buhler SeedMaster® TWIN tempering system. These are the first two SeedMaster® units to be applied in South America. Good contraction and improved gloss of the end products are two among numerous other reasons why the customer opted for this new process. The lines have been designed and specified on the basis of stateof- the-art engineering and process technological considerations in order to ensure a consistently high and reproducible final quality and weight accuracy of the products, which satisfay the most rigorous hygiene standards. “A large part of the lines is made of stainless steel or aluminum without any sharp edges and with easy access for cleaning. Moreover, the lines offer very reliable operation,” says Gerardo Bertone. “The PowerShot ™ depositing unit ensures an accurate filling weight, and the centrifugal process produces a high shell quality.” Between depositing, filling, lidding, and molding, the molds pass through a thermotechnical process based on a very smart design. It ensures that the chocolate articles have a glossy surface and – as a result of controlled crystallization – a crunchy chocolate structure, thanks to the uniform heating of the entire mold.

Service and consulting
The new molding lines offer Arcor genuine added value: The high flexibility of their thoroughly thought-out design allows a large number of applications. Moreover, Arcor praises Buhler for its careful and professional project handling, to which also the local Buhler organizations in Argentina and Brazil contributed.

Buhler did more than just supply the lines: It was also present on site during start-up of the equipment. Start-up went off without a glitch, thanks to the support provided by Buhler. “The technical support provided by Buhler was key to ensuring successful commissioning,” says Gerardo Bertone in retrospect. “The Buhler technicians transferred their entire knowledge to our own people. This made it easy for my team to understand the process and the new technologies involved. Our communications with the Buhler team were excellent before as well as after the lines went into service. The Buhler technicians were always very helpful and prepared to find the best solution for the project.”

Neatly molded and glossy end products, carefully aligned on their way to the packaging line. Neatly molded and glossy end products, carefully aligned on their way to the packaging line.

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