The New Plant
MORE EFFICIENT, CALM AND ACCURATE
COOPERATION WITH PARTNERS
Selo operates in both the meat processing and protein processing industries. Vegetable meat products require a different adjustment and approach than meat or meat products, according to Baalhuis. "A lot of machines are basically the same, but for vegetable products you usually need more powerful motors and a different configuration of the machine structure, because the dough is stickier. So the machine needs a little more attention. Fortunately, Selo and Seydelmann are very innovative companies that invest a lot in development. The 1,000-liter cutter is a great example of that, because it is the only vacuum-boiling cutter in the world with that capacity. Over the last 20 years, we have built up a lot of knowledge of oily food products from Selo anyway. We were able to apply that knowledge at The New Plant," Baalhuis explains. "In the case of The New Plant, we are talking about a new plant where only vegetable-based meat products are made. For manufacturers who produce both meat and plant-based products, we always advise separating production, because allergy-wise it is very difficult to use one machine for both types of products." "By the way, the machines are designed in such a way that they can be very easily linked to machines from other brands," Baalhuis continued. "Once the dough is prepared, it is further routed to a portioning machine from Vemag Maschinenbau and an extruder (shaper) from DJM Food Processing. "We as Selo are able to set up an entire factory or production area fully automated or semi-automated. Seydelmann forms the basis for mixing and cutting, but for the other parts of a production line we choose partners we can rely on. Preferred partners with a proven track record. That is certainly the case at The New Plant."
Sticking your neck out for the customer
Selo, says Baalhuis, also sticks its neck out to help customers. "Within Selo we have our own Technology Center, where we have all kinds of different machines and we can test recipes together with food technologists with small quantities and eventually scale them up to the desired capacity. At the moment, we are conducting protein tests with vegetable products according to a new concept. It is very nice for manufacturers anyway that we can test products or a line in practice in our own Technology Center. After all, process support is the best thing there is," he laughs. "Production employees have become 'Operator Foodprocessing.' Together with the customer, we work out concepts that maximize efficiency and minimize the chance of staff errors. Because the entire process is automated, manual intervention is actually no longer necessary. Products are thus consistent in terms of composition, but it also increases food safety and hygienic working. The operator is shown step-by-step on the screen what he or she needs to do. The software is written by Selo itself and we can always watch live from Hengelo if something goes wrong or if the machine gives an error message or a malfunction (Remote Control)." "Together with Selo, we are going to see how we can further increase capacity, because the demand for our products is high. We make portions of minced meat, sausages, burgers and meatballs here. The machines from Selo and Seydelmann are used for all these products," Soetens says. The cooperation between Selo, its partners and The New Plant has ensured that Beyond Meat in Zoeterwoude-Rijndijk has a modern factory where a lot has been automated compared to the existing process in America.