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Expansion Drives Need for QC

Metal detectors help Doughnut Peddler elevate food safety standards, meet GMP requirements and win customers.

Stealth metal detectors equipped with FM software inspect 160 doughnuts/min., overcome issues with product effect and minimize false rejects at three Doughnut Peddler plants.
Stealth metal detectors equipped with FM software inspect 160 doughnuts/min., overcome issues with product effect and minimize false rejects at three Doughnut Peddler plants.

Show Daily Exclusive -  At Doughnut Peddler, four Stealth Metal Detectors from Fortress Technology (Booth C-1951), help the company achieve the highest food safety standards, meet GMP requirements and win the confidence of new retail customers as it embarks on an aggressive expansion program.

“We always strive for perfection in terms of efficiency, food safety and quality,” reports Jason Yada, national director of Sales at Doughnut Peddler. He continues, “We want to hit the highest industry standards and make sure we protect our customers and end-consumers with a safety program they are confident in. Metal detection adds another layer of ‘failsafe’ protection.”
In the space of three years, Doughnut Peddler has gone from operating a single bakery servicing its home state of Arizona to a multi-site enterprise supplying retailers in nine states.

Yada says, “We’ve seen a snowball effect in the last three years. Once our customers see what we are capable of, they want to work with us in other territories.” To keep pace with demand, bakeries in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and Charlotte, North Carolina, opened in 2017 and were joined by facilities in Orlando, Florida, in 2018 and Houston, Texas, in 2019. The company now makes 800,000+ deliveries each year, transporting more than 60 million doughnuts, cinnamon rolls, apple fritters and other freshly baked goods to convenience stores across North America.

The company wanted to invest in metal detection but needed a business justification. The rapid expansion provided the commercial case it needed. Doughnut Peddler’s Jon Dairman, senior operation manager - Procurement, recalls, “We looked at various options and suppliers, gathered quotes and asked colleagues in the industry to share their experiences. We received positive feedback from everyone who had owned a Fortress unit—no one had anything negative to say about them.”

Doughnut Peddler’s brief, in terms of what it wanted from its metal detectors, was straightforward. Dairman was just looking for metal detection. He says, “We didn’t want any bells and whistles, just something reliable—I wanted it not to be an issue, to be able to set it and forget it.”

However, from a metal detection perspective, the project wasn’t entirely straightforward. Doughnuts come out of the fryer and onto a 12-ft. cooling conveyor. Doughnut Peddler wanted to mount the detectors at this point, as it provides the last opportunity to inspect before doughnuts are packed into plastic trays that sit in metal baskets. However, the combination of high temperatures and moisture creates a “product effect” that can confuse metal detection equipment, as it cannot discriminate between it and actual metal contamination. This can result in frequent false rejects.

With Doughnut Peddler’s lines running continuously at speeds of 160 doughnuts/min., the company could not entertain the possibility of false rejects disrupting production. Fortunately, the Stealth metal detector was able to achieve reliable performance on this product. The system combines powerful digital signal processing technology and FM software that provides high-speed precision detection and dual-frequency operation and automatically compensates for extreme product characteristics. All processing power resides on one board, versus multiple boards required on some competitive models.

These technical and mechanical features nullify or eliminate signals due to mechanical, electrical, airborne or product influences so the detector can effectively identify signals created by three types of metal, ferrous, nonferrous and 300 series stainless steel, and minimize the risk of false rejects.

Four full conveyor Stealth systems are installed on lines at the company’s bakeries in North Carolina, Tennessee and Florida. As Doughnut Peddler continues to pursue an ambitious interstate growth strategy, the ability to demonstrate this level of rigor is proving beneficial. According to Yada: “We are already seeing that having enhanced product protection in place has the potential to unlock different customers. Some of the potential customers we are reaching out to are even more encouraged in working with us as they learn of our use of the robust metal detection hazard analysis and critical control points plan we have in place.”
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