Interview brot & backwaren, 04/17

The French immigrant Laurent Boillon founded the Laurent Bakery in Melbourne, Australia, in 1993. At rst it was only a shop producing and selling patisserie products and traditional French breads. The business grew steadily in the following years, and now has 15 sales outlets in Melbourne, Clayton and Sydney. Laurent Boillon opened up new markets in parallel with his own branches. For example, clients can now obtain French-style baked products in the wholesale or in the food service area nationally and internationally.

As the bakery says, it pioneered the use of sourdoughs in Australia, and the company developed its own series starters and sourdoughs. Laurent also advertises the fact that its bakers produce baked goods by traditional methods, for which the company also uses stone-plate baking ovens. Because Australians are convinced by the concept, Laurent Boillon’s production facility has now become too small. The entrepre- neur will rely on plant technology from Europe in the new building.

New building

Following the bakery’s steady growth, a new production unit is now being built. For this, as DIOSNA’s Commercial Manager and Bakery Technology Division Manager Henrik Oevermann explains, the company is investing in what is probably the world’s biggest artisan mixing plant. e Laurent Bakery benefits from a change in the market and consumers in Australia. DIOSNA’s Asia Sales Director and industry expert Ralf Bohne reports that in Down Under, bread is often no longer used simply as something to put under topping or as a basis for a sandwich, and instead many consumers are now asking for “real bread with sourdough”. The Laurent Bakery has focused on this trend. Customers are also willing to pay a significantly higher price for the products at the same time. 

Therefore, Laurent Boillon opened his own production facility in 2013 to produce bread and bread rolls with an output capacity of 2.5 tons/hour. Due to reaching the capacity limit, a second production unit is now being opened in Melbourne with an initial capacity of 5.2 tons/hour for which, among other things, DIOSNA is supplying the mixers and IsernHäger the sponge dough plants. Esteve is responsible for metering and the silos in this turnkey project. 

Asian mixing plant

There is also a DIOSNA dough mixing system with three type 600 wendel mixers, a linear transport system including two robots, and 36 stainless steel tanks. According to Henrik Oevermann, it’s the biggest artisan plant in the world, or at least one of the biggest plants DIOSNA has ever built. Laurent Boillon also imposes particularly high hygiene demands. For example, most of the plant components are made of stainless steel and thus easy to clean. Fully automatic tank cleaning also operates in the system. Each stainless steel tank can be washed individually and fully automatically after it has been emptied. Ralf Bohne also explains that “It’s also possible toclean all the tanks at once by pushing a button, e.g. after pro- duction ends.” This cycle, in which all 36 stainless steel tanks are cleaned, takes around 2.5 hours.

The mixing/kneading process starts after automatically metering in all the ingredients. Recycled dough is metered into one of the bowls together with the other raw materials such as flour, water, sponge dough and yeast. The first wen- del mixer then follows. After kneading, a robot then carries the bowl to one of the system’s dough resting stations. Other ingredients can now be added as necessary, depending on the recipe. After the dough rest period, a second robot takes over the bowl, and two more type 600 wendel mixers are ready to knead out the dough as required. There is about 480 kg of dough in each of the stainless steel bowls at this time. At the end of the kneading and dough resting process, a bowl tipper transfers the dough via an oilable cone for further processing on the other lines. There is an automatic bowl cleaning facility on the other side, i.e. opposite to the bowl tipper. Delivery of the Esteve, IsernHäger and DIOSNA plants is now ongoing to allow the Laurent Bakery’s new production plant to start operation in the fall of 2017 with the motto “French inspired – Australian owned”.