March 31/Leeds, U.K./Journal of Technology & Science -- According to recent research from Leeds, the United Kingdom, "Traditional chocolate manufacturing relies largely on the experience and skill of the chocolatier. Nowadays, with the replacement of manual processes with automated equipments, it is increasingly important to apply right processing conditions and controlling parameters, such as the time, the temperature, the moisture content, the relative humidity of the surrounding air, etc."
"This study investigated the influences of these factors during the moulding and cooling stage of chocolate manufacturing process on the ease of demoulding. Adhesion of chocolate to the polycarbonate mould surface was used as a measure for the demoulding properties and was determined as the force required to separate a flat mould surface from the solidified chocolate sample. The results demonstrated that processing parameters, like temperature and the relative humidity of the surrounding environment, have a significant impact on contact time, chocolate crystallization and solidification processes and on the adhesion of chocolate to a mould surface," wrote E.L. Keijbets and colleagues, University of Leeds.
The researchers concluded, "Experimental findings from this work confirmed observations made during commercial chocolate manufacturing."
Keijbets and colleagues published their study in the Journal of Food Engineering ("Chocolate Demoulding and Effects of Processing Conditions." Journal of Food Engineering, 2010;98(1):133-140).
For additional information, contact J.S. Chen, University of Leeds, Sch Food Science & Nutr, Leeds LS2 9JT, W Yorkshire, United Kingdom.
From the April 12, 2010, Prepared Foods E-dition