New Tool: ProSource
Checkout our packaging and processing solutions finder, ProSource.
Start Your Search

What’s New at IBIE 2022

Innovation on the show floor ranges from electric diaphragm pumps to soft grippers that bakers are swarming to.


Quick hits:

  • Babbco displayed its hybrid tunnel oven, allowing bakers to use various energy sources, including natural gas and electricity.
  • Graco demoed its electric diaphragm pump, which saves 80% of energy use in comparison to traditional pneumatic air diaphragm pumps.
  • Steamericas’ dry vapor steamer is a pneumatic conveyor CIP tool for mesh, interlocked, and wire belt conveyors.
  • Festo’s adaptive soft grippers are designed to pick up delicate baked goods of various shapes and sizes using positive pressure and vaccum.

Related to this episode:

   Read the transcript below:

Hi, I’m Melissa Griffen, Contributing Editor with ProFood World Magazine here at the International Baking Industry Exposition and this is the new west hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center. Let’s see what’s going on at the show.

Exhibitors displayed ingredients, edible decorations, and various package designs. A few sustainable and efficient solutions on the show floor came from Babbco with its hybrid tunnel oven presented by its vice president, Jerry Barnes, followed by Jeff Schaffer with Graco and its electric diaphragm pump.

“Our answer has been to develop what we call a hybrid oven. Much like you have hybrids with automobiles, we presented the tunnel oven with the capacity to run either standard natural gas, liquid propane, or electricity. It provides end-users with the option of choosing the fuel that makes the most sense for them.

“Here in the United States, natural gas is probably six times cheaper than electricity. If you live in New Zealand, hydroelectric power is very prevalent so it may make sense in looking at energy solutions to move over to electricity.

“So, what we have here is we have the ability to run either gas burner or electric element; either all electric, all gas, or we could start with gas and switch over to electric. This gives end users the ability to meet sustainability goals, whether that’s net zero or carbon neutral. We want to provide them with choices and solutions that make sense for them.” -Barnes.

“Here in our booth we’re highlighting one of our new pumps. This is an electric diaphragm pump. A typical diaphragm pump runs off of pneumatic air power. This has an electric drive with the control right on the pump. You can change speed, vary your pressure and flow.

“The real benefit for end-users here is controllability and energy savings. Compressed air is really inefficient. This reduces your energy saving by up to 80% and you have a lot more controllability as far as speed and pressure. You can run digital inputs and outputs to control the pump, stop and start the pump, and get feedback to your systems.” -Schaffer. 

Also exhibited were AMRs to free up the bakers from menial tasks, industrial washers, bulk feeders and other machines such as conveyor belts and steamers from Steamerica. 

“Hi. My name is Ebony Young. I am the sales operational director for Steamericas, based out of Los Angeles, California. We're here at 7605 at the IBIE show, displaying our dry vapor steamer, which uses 0.08 gallons per minute, about 220 degrees at the nozzle which helps you sanitize and clean with no excess water and really no need for chemicals.” -Young.

This air-driven, pneumatic conveyor tool is designed to clean various belts from 4 to 60in wide, covering 5.9-39.4 n per sec and can reduce labor hours. A last product from Festo has turned out to be high in demand among bakers. Ryan Kroger, mechanical designer demonstrated the company’s soft grippers.

“So, what we have here is one of our four-finger adaptive grippers for a lot of different shapes and sizes. If we pick up the muffin here and you can see how the fingers adapt and shape to the object for picking. If we go to a longer, skinnier object you can see that the fingers will rotate in and act as a parallel gripper, so you get the best of both worlds out of one gripper. The same gripper can be used for smaller objects shown here. And if you have larger objects we can apply pressure to expand the finger spacing. 

“More about the construction here. To operate it all we’re doing is applying vacuum to the membrane and then positive pressure to open the fingers. This can all be controlled via a pressure regulator or a proportional pressure regulator if you needed different gripping force on products of different shapes and sizes. The material will be an FDA-compliant IP69 ingressed Protected housing.” -Kroger.

After a great week here in Las Vegas at IBIE 2022, stay tuned for more coverage from the show floor.

Discover Our Content Hub
Access ProFood World's free educational content library!
Unlock Learning Here
Discover Our Content Hub
Test Your Smarts
Take ProFood World's food safety quiz to prove your knowledge!
Take Quiz
Test Your Smarts