Transferring caramel differently has reduced waste, saved costs and increased yield at Burtons Biscuits

Kecol Pumping Systems has worked with Burtons Biscuits on a new way of transferring caramel that in operation, has reduced waste to less than 1%.

Caramel can be a challenging material to extract, particularly when delivered in one tonne totes. To make things more efficient, Burtons Biscuits initially placed the totes into a warm room to enable the caramel to flow easier from the tote via a pump and then into a hopper. However, the company found that one of the main drawbacks of this process using totes was that the caramel would stick to the inside walls as the pump sucked out the caramel. At times, this would mean that between 10% to 30% of the caramel would be left in the tote, unable to be extracted.

This method involved connecting a pump to the bottom outlet of the tote and transferring the caramel to a hopper, which worked well until the level of caramel fell to between 10% and 30%. From this point, the pump cavitated and could not draw the caramel in, resulting in between 10% and 30% of the contents of the tote being returned to the supplier, costing anything between £50,000 and £140,000 per annum in unused caramel.

Consequently, the Continuous Improvement team at Burtons looked at available options to reduce this waste and/or increase the yield. It found that reverting to 200 litre drums of caramel rather than using the tote, could be the answer.

Subsequently, Kecol was asked to make proposals for transferring the caramel from these 200 litre drums to the line hopper and offered a Kecol H800SN Maxiprime unit c/w 10:1 ratio piston pump.

Kecol supplied a test unit to Burtons for a two-week trial period to enable evaluation of the proposed system. While the system transferred the caramel at the required rate and reduced the waste, the drum loader used by Burtons could not place the drum into the Maxiprime in the correct position. To resolve this problem, Kecol worked with engineers at Burtons and then modified the standard Maxiprime to suit the existing drum loader.

Burtons purchased two H800SN Maxiprime systems and has since reduced the waste caramel to less than 1%, significantly reducing expenditure and increasing yield.


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