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Universal Technology of Processing Fine Barley, Wheat and Pea Cereals

Valid «Rules of arranging and operating process flows at groats mills» provide for separate technologies of processing fine barley, wheat and pea cereals. In order to expand the range of cereals, in particular, for a groats mill, it is not always feasible to construct new cereal production shops.

We have developed a universal compatible process flow, designed for processing several crops: wheat, barley and pea. This flow enables to manufacture wheat, fine barley, pearl barley and pea cereals on the same process equipment under a flexible process flow diagram. The specific feature of the interchangeable process flow is the use of common grain cleaning department and hydrothermal treatment unit for the above crops. This improves grain process properties, useful qualities of the finished product, and significantly raises the output, by 8-12%, while reducing costs for product hulling and polishing. The first universal process flow was implemented at Khmelnitsky bread baking plant in 1997 in the cereal production shop with the capacity of 50…60 tons of grain per day.

To steam grain the continuous flow steamer is used, which enables to treat pea and non-free flowing crops evenly.

The merits of the steamer design include high reliability of feeding and discharging units. Their operation is fully automated and depends only on the selected control mode.

In the suggested technology grain drying after steaming is performed on the steam dryer by combined conductive-convective method that allows the use of the waste heat. The design of the dryer also allows grain cooling. Compared to the existing steam dryers VS-10М enables to increase drying speed and thus the capacity by 1,5…1,7 times, while improving the evenness of drying and quality of the finished products due to the heat convection delivery to the grain.

As a result of effective hydrothermal treatment grain changes its process properties, shells may be easily separated from kernels, the kernels are less subject to damaging, which not only increases cereal output, but also improves its quality. For each crop there are different modes of hydrothermal treatment. For example, for hard wheat kernels it is possible to apply the modes treating shells only, which will facilitate their hulling. For the soft wheat with low vitreousity deep steaming is performed. It changes its structure thus increasing strength and decreasing kernel damaging during further mechanical treatment. It is important that the machine provides an opportunity to process cereal regardless of the wheat quality. Therefore, it is not required to use hard wheat (durum) only. Practical use of the new technology showed that, e.g., while producing fine barley cereal, the hulling factor of the hydrothermally treated barley rose 23..32% and instead of the four hulling systems, indicated in the "Rules...", it was enough to use two systems, which saved up to 20% electric power for this operation only. At the same time, the output of cereal of the first and second category increased 7...11% owing to the reduction of the third category cereal and hulling bran. The cereal made of steamed barley has better taste and smell, this cereal has a higher water-uptake ratio, it is fluffy, and the cooking time is reduced by more than twice.

The pea hydrothermal treatment has higher impact on the hulling factor (compared to barley) due to the partial peeling and agglutination of seed lobes. In this case hulling pea seeds requires only one hulling system. However, the most important advantage of using the pea hydrothermal treatment is obviously not only higher rate of whole kernel output, saving energy costs, improving useful qualities, but also the removal of unpleasant bean odour.

The interchangeable universal process flow enables to use mainly the same process equipment. To switch production over to another crop, it is necessary to exchanges sieves in the sifting machines, switch butterfly valves, select the number of hulling systems, exchanges rolls on the roll hullers and, consequently, specify the operation mode for each kind of process equipment.

At the Customer’s request it is possible to complete the delivery set of the universal groats mill (barley, wheat, pea) with the equipment for manufacturing corn and oat cereals. In this case it is required to complete the hulling department of the groats mill with additional equipment (centrifugal hullers, degerminators, paddy machines etc.).

Advantages of this groats mill:

  • minimum investments for processing additional raw materials;
  • possibility to operate the mill on the available raw material, current demand for finished products, fast manufacturing the products required by the consumer;
  • installation of the cereal flakes production line connected to this groats mill leads to the extension of the finished product range etc.