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We use a great cacao powder but its grind is not fine enough.
We use about 20 kg over a week period.
Can anyone recommend machinery to correct the grind of the cacao powder.

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Most cocoa powder is 8-10 um in particle size - if you require finer, try something like a jet mill.

I'd be surprised if you required finer than that.  It's probably easier simply to find an alternate cocoa powder - perhaps the one you're using is of poor quality.   Jet milling can give you sub micron particle size, but it will be very, very expensive.

That's interesting machinery. Thinking about it I really need to quantify the problem first. I suppose getting a particle size distribution test done is the way to go?

I think you'd need to determine what it is you need, why you need it - and then determine how to get there.  my guess is there's quite a bit of cocoa out there already that suits your needs... but then again you may have very unique needs!

Well we have been concerned about graininess for some time with one of our fair trade, organic cold pressed powders. The settled larger particles also seem more bitter. We have had some chocolate experts test the ice blocks and they agree about the grainyness.

Ill contact the CSIRO and the Symbio lab on Tuesday to see if they can do particle size and distribution. My guess is that the powder is quite coarse (i can see particles on sifting) and a bit of milling in something like a Buhler powder mill would turn it into a less bitter more smooth iced confection offering.

I'm afraid there is no such thing as a cold pressed cocoa powder - at least i've never seen one. it may be an expeller process, but it's still going to be a hot process.  The purpose of pressing is to get the cocoa butter out, and if the cocoa butter is solid, it won't come out.  If you use a supercritical solvent extraction process, you can keep the temperature down, but it wont be organic then.

Really the only benefit of keeping the temp low might be to keep some of the heart healthy components around longer - which are bitter.

Sounds like whomever is making it isn't giving you quite the right process description, and from what you're indicating, however they're grinding it is simply insufficient. there's plenty of cocoa processors in your neck of the woods who will be capapble of doing a typical grind cocoa powder.  i think i might know the answer - but out of curiosity who's supplying your current powder?

Flick me an email at info@iceblocks.name to discuss powder.
John

The cold pressed thing is not a big deal to us, so we have never fully investigated 'cold' claims.
We have to pasteurize the powder ourselves anyhow to meet Australian legal food safety / HACCP requirements.

Organic is a differentiator though.
Fair trade we like to support if appropriate.

Would be great to make a truly fantastic chocolate ice block.

I just got home from a great weekend in the mountains to read this trash!

 

IceBlocks, you throw around buzzwords like you know what you're talking about (...our fair trade, organic cold pressed... blah blah) , and then when pressed by someone who REALLY DOES know what he's talking about you confess PUBLICLY nonetheless that you don't even know if it is "cold pressed".

 

It's people like you that I got into this industry in the first place - people who use words because they sound good, and without concern of the ramifications that they have when a consumer reads them and then goes into a LEGIT business and says "I'm raw vegan and I want to purchase chocolate made with cold pressed cocoa butter."  Then my staff have to undo the damage YOU have caused.

 

Personally I'm dumbfounded that you haven't even thoroughly researched your ingredients in the first place, and given what you've written here, it's highly doubtful that you even have a clue if it's fair trade or organic!

 

Shame on you.

 

Brad.

1) I have a copy of the organic certification certificates for the cacao powder...

2) Fair trade products come with a FLO ID...

3) I assume if a reputable supplier describes it as cold pressed that it is...

4) We legally have to pasteurize it, so it's not raw, so don't care if it was...

5) Whats the problem with people wanting a vegan product? It's their choice.

6) What is your problem with organics? We choose to stimulate demand for something we believe in. Ours and our customers choice.

7) If you cant meet a demand don't whine to me

Brad:

The language and attitude is totally uncalled for. We've had these discussions privately. You can make the points you want to make without being either overbearing or condescending.

Please.

I wasn't overbearing or condescending.

I simply caught a liar in a lie.  After all Clay, it wasn't like the words just "slipped" off of IceBlocks' keyboard!  He consciously typed them, and even made sure they were spelled right. In fact they were even used in correct context, which can only lead a person to believe that IceBlocks KNOWS what the words mean, and the impact they have.

 

SOMEBODY needs to step up and call to task those who purposely misrepresent themselves and/or their products.  If nobody did this, what value would forums like this have?

 
"language used..."??? I didn't know "shame on you" was swearing. 

If you want to chastize someone in your "house of business" chastize the guy who misleads people, and not the guy who points out obvious marketing BS designed to mislead others.

Brad, maybe it wasn't so much of a lie as it was just misinformation? It seems that maybe IceBlocks is of about the same knowledge level as I am (that is, having read up on most things readily available, but doesn't have the working knowledge of the industry that a veteran chocolatier would have?), and took a supplier's terms that he used at face value. I think you're really upset at his supplier for labeling something as "cold-pressed" that obviously (to someone who knows what the process of separating cocoa butter from the powder truly entails) could never have undergone such a process. 

I do understand where you're coming from, since as a professional it irks to hear someone use terms like that so improperly. There needs to be a standard that everyone is held to, and deceptive labeling should be punished appropriately. BUT, that doesn't mean that an entrepreneur who is ignorant of certain parts of the process should be derided and chastised for a simple mistake. 

How about educating him on the reasons as to why it's impossible for him to have "cold-pressed, raw cocoa butter" instead of berating him for not having this knowledge beforehand? I mean, that's the point of these forums, right? For people to come together and share knowledge of cocoa and chocolate?

Peace and Love!

~Tom

99% of the time I can't disagree with what you've written here Tom.

In this particular case, IceBlocks comes across as someone technically astute.  After all, how many chocolatiers do you know of who talk about sending their cocoa powder to a lab for analysis? 

 

HERE'S A BETTER ONE:  Iceblocks says they have to conform to HACCP as required by the Australian Government.  HACCP is an acronym which stands for Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point and is a very comprehensive program that companies use to identify critical points of potential microbial contamination in their manufactured food.  Given that the Australian Government has determined that raw cocoa powder is contaminated and needs sterilization (or so Iceblocks says), it doesn't take a rocket scientist to put 2 and 2 together and conclude that raw cocoa butter comes from raw cocoa beans, and if raw cocoa solids are contaminated, the raw cocoa butter would DEFINITELY be considered contaminated too and thus a critical control point in the manufacturing process, which would definitely mandate further research into the supplier's claims, and also require a step to sterilize it, which would ALSO mean the fact that it's cold pressed would be irrelevant, because it would be heated at some point!

 

In the manufacturing world, it is common knowledge that fats such as cocoa butter act as fabulous preservatives and suspension mediums for pathogens such as eColi and Salmonella - allowing the bacterium to live much longer than if they were just on the surface of a food item. 

For further educational purposes (after all, we're here to learn right?), here are the seven key points to an effective HACCP program:  Note that STEP ONE mandates that Iceblocks should have done his homework LONG before he wrote about raw processed cocoa butter.

 

HACCP step 1 requires manufacturers to conduct a hazard analysis; they must identify food hazards and implement a written HACCP plan for food hazards that are “reasonably likely to occur” during processing.[46] Step 2 requires manufacturers to identify within the HACCP plan the critical control points (CCPs)—the points in the manufacturing process where the identified food hazards can be minimized—and the measures that will be taken to control the hazards.[47] The third step requires manufacturers to identify and establish critical limits, the outer boundaries in which physical, biological, or chemical parameters must remain in order to control the food hazards. [48]

 

HACCP steps 4, 6 and 7—establishing monitoring, record-keeping and verification procedures—ensure the proper day-to-day functioning of the manufacturing process. Manufacturers must maintain records documenting the ongoing application of the HACCP; this requires written proof that the processor is monitoring the critical control points and critical limits, i.e., the actual recording of times, temperatures, and other measurements required by the HACCP plan.[49] Furthermore, the food processors must verify that the HACCP plan is being implemented properly. Trained individuals must review the company’s HACCP records and consumer complaints, check the calibration of process monitoring instruments, and, when necessary, conduct periodic end-product or in-process testing.[50] Because scientific knowledge is always expanding, the food processor must also validate its HACCP plan annually; if the food processor had earlier concluded that no hazards were present and no HACCP plan was needed, it must reassess its earlier hazard analysis whenever there are any changes that could “reasonably affect” whether a food hazard now exists.[51]


The final HACCP step (step 5) requires manufacturers to establish corrective actions. Manufacturers must include within their HACCP plans corrective actions for situations in which a deviation from a critical limit occurs—e.g., when sterilization machinery does not maintain the proper temperature.[52] These plans should ensure that any injurious product is withheld from the stream of commerce and that the cause of the deviation is corrected.[53] Should a deviation occur for which there is no plan, the manufacturer must quarantine the potentially injurious product; determine whether the food product meets the safety criteria for distribution; and take appropriate action to ensure that any injurious product does not reach consumers and that the cause of the deviation is corrected.[54] Anytime the manufacturer takes corrective actions, the actions must be documented.[55] Importantly, when a deviation occurs for which there is no plan, the manufacturer must reassess the HACCP plan, and make any necessary modifications to the plan; this requirement ensures that when unexpected deviations occur, the manufacturer will reassess and rework the safety and quality controls it has built into the system.[56]


For further reading on the HACCP infrastructure, please feel free to visit the following web page:  http://dash.harvard.edu/bitstream/handle/1/8965572/Axelrod06.html?s...


There is no way around this.  Either Iceblocks is lying about HACCP, OR Iceblocks is lying about his cocoa butter being cold pressed.  It is logically impossible to know about one, and not care/not know about the other.  Iceblocks is not simply "misinformed."

 

I stand by what I said before.  Shame on Iceblocks.

 

I guess there is one other possibility:  Iceblocks doesn't have a clue about either HACCP, OR cold pressing of cocoa butter, in which case double shame on him.

Brad

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