Choosing a Temperature and Humidity Data Logger for Your Bakery

Ignoring the performance of your commercial bakery ovens can be hazardous. Choosing a temperature and humidity data logger from Reading Thermal will provide the critical information you need to understand and improve the processes that affect your products.

Reading Thermal, located in Sinking Spring, Pennsylvania, has measured the commercial baking process for over 25 years. We manufacture the SCORPION® 2 Profiling System and Data Logger, a standard in the baking industry that offers you an easy way to monitor actual oven in-process conditions.

Connecting our different smart sensors and sensor arrays to the SCORPION® 2 Profiling System and passing them through the oven with your product enables the system to capture the four main baking parameters: temperature (including the temperature of both the air and the oven belt surface), heat flux (energy transfer), humidity, and airflow (velocity).

Importance of Temperature Profiling

Product level temperature in an oven can make the difference between optimum quality and wasteful, under-baked, or burnt product. The process of fermentation, product swelling, moisture evaporation, flavor development, and surface coloring are all time and temperature dependent. For example:

  • Too little heat while baking can create products that are too light in color.
  • Too little heat while baking can result in brittle or dry crusts,
  • Too little heat while baking can create a structure that is too dense.
  • Too much heat while baking can cause the bottoms of the loaves to burn before the crusts brown correctly.
  • Too much heat while baking causes moisture to evaporate too rapidly and the dough to rise unevenly.

Producers of bread, artisan bread, rolls, hamburger buns, cakes, biscuits, or other bread products, understand that several stages of the process are temperature-dependent, including oven-spring, drying/dehydration, and color formation.

The Reading Thermal SCORPION® 2 Temperature Sensor Array is designed to measure temperature at product level, in fixed positions across the conveyor, and delivers a true representation of what your product is experiencing over time.

Importance of Humidity Profiling

Products passing through a thermal process interact with the amount of moisture in the environment. Much of this moisture comes from the products themselves and represents a delicate balance that can affect finished products in many ways. For example:

  • High oven humidity can lighten the crust color of baked goods.
  • High oven humidity can increase the volume of your baked goods.
  • High oven humidity can soften crisp crusts and make crackers lose their crunch.
  • Too little moisture in a finished product can directly affect breakage during the packaging process.
  • Too little moisture can cause goods that should be soft and moist to overbake and become tough or dry.
  • The amount of moisture left in a pretzel after baking affects its shelf life.

The SCORPION® Digital Humidity Sensor is an excellent way to measure humidity in your oven, proofer, dryer, and cooling tunnel. Mechanically, it includes an Air Temperature sensor, two inputs for Product Core Temperature Measurement, and a proprietary humidity sampling system to measure Dew Point Temperature, Absolute Humidity, and Relative Humidity.

Oven temperature and humidity levels have a significant impact on the quality and consistency of your bakery products. Choosing a temperature and humidity data logger will help you bake your products to perfection. Contact us online, or call us at (610) 678-5890 Ext. 2 for more details about our innovative products.