Processing efficiency

Improve process efficiency and cost effectiveness, while maintaining product quality? Find out what we have to offer!

Most production processes in the food industry are sub-optimal. Significant cost reductions can often be achieved by implementing measures aimed at improving processing efficiency.

Process efficiency improvement includes a wide range of aspects such as reducing energy consumption or cleaning time, improving production capacity or yield, improving product quality, or reducing off-spec product or fouling. Detailed knowledge about process–product interactions is essential for identifying and implementing efficiency improving measures. Our expertise in process–product interactions is a key aspect of our process scan approach.

In a process scan we review information about the production line, analyse product samples and visit your production site. Our experts inspect the production line, gather information and data and take additional samples if necessary. In addition, we run calculations with the predictive modelling tools available in NIZO-Premia. Potential solutions can be also validated on semi-industrial scale in our food grade Processing Centre.

Our process scans cover a wide range of dairy and food products, such as yoghurt, cheese and powder. For example, for many powders, drying capacity is limited by stickiness properties of the product, often resulting in fouling problems. We overcome these issues and optimize drying capacity. For this we analyse the powder (sorption isotherms and stickiness), inspecting your production line to gather information during an on-site visit and perform predictive model calculations using Premia-DrySpec. The DrySpec calculations show whether your dryer is running in the non-sticky operational window in the reference case and predict process settings that will result in optimal capacity without fouling. DrySpec also takes into account variations in weather conditions, such as ambient air humidity. This makes it possible to run the dryer at optimal capacity at all times. In general, our drying approach results in 5–10% capacity increase, or even higher if the dryer exhibits premature fouling in the reference situation.

Working together in consortia

  • Hobré
  • Swirl Flow
  • Go4dairy


  • Martijn Fox, Rien Habraken, Marjon Wells-Bennik, Margreet Hovenkamp QMRA The next step in food safety International dairy magazine 2013 4/5 6-8
  • Martijn Fox, Coen Akkerman, Han Straatsma, Peter de Jong Energy reduction by high dry matter concentration and drying. New food magazine 2010, 2, 60-63
  • Natalie Hotrum, Martijn Fox, Hein van Lieverloo, Erik Smit, Peter de Jong and Maarten Schutyser Modelling heat processing of dairy products in Improving the safety and quality of milk 2010 Mansel Griffiths ed.
  • Purwanti, M.B. Fox, K. Schroën, P. de Jong The micro heater: a new tool for rapid determination of food kinetics Journal of Food Engineering 2009, 91, 78–84