Stuffing machines are used to prepare foods which enclose a filling in an outer layer of dough, pastry or other edible materials. They are commonly used for large scale production of traditional foods such as sausages, sandwiches and pasties, as well as world foods and pasta products.
The range of foods produced with stuffing machines is driven by the different culinary approaches found in culturally diverse communities. Over many centuries, foods enjoyed overseas have been embraced in local markets, and the current taste for new taste experiences is encouraging further innovation.
Many retailers stock prepared stuffed foods such as Italian ravioli, Indian samosas, empanadas from Latin America, Polish pierogi, Chinese dim sum and Jamaican patties. The variety of stuffed foods available continues to grow.
What does a food stuffing machine do?
Stuffing machinery generally consists of:
- a conveyor to feed the outer food casing into the stuffing machine
- a hopper for food filling
- a volumetric or weight control for accurate measurement of the filling
- a depositor to add the filling to the outer food casing
- a forming unit which folds, seals and, where required, cuts the product into its finished form.
Equipment is available as standalone single units, or as units designed for integration in end-to-end production lines. The machinery can be suitable for the production of low volume products as well as in lines for high volume output. Control systems can ensure great accuracy and consistency in the finished products.
Stuffing machines can work with single sheets or double sheets of pasta, pastry or other edible food casings. Single sheets are folded to enclose the filling, while double sheets are laid on top of each other and sealed, or left unsealed in the case of sandwiches and other open-sided products.
Food stuffing hygiene and safety
To ensure hygienic food production, stuffing machines are generally engineered from stainless steel and wipeable high grade plastics. Many designs feature easy disassembly for thorough cleaning of all equipment in contact with food.
Temperature control is a further hygiene consideration for raw and cooked products, and the stuffing machinery must operate safe temperatures. Generally, this will mean installing the machinery in a chilled environment to avoid the risk of bacterial infection.
Full compliance with the guidelines of the Food Standards Agency is essential for UK food processing companies.
Access a list of PPMA member companies who supply Stuffing Machinery