JBT Formcook is one of the undoubted pioneers of contact cooking, the innovative method for sealing moisture into protein products by employing teflon belts, which can improve both yield and flavor. However, in spite of the challenging situation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, Formcook is continuing to help new and established customers start up new cooking lines, thanks to JBT’s effective remote support options.
Originally established in Helsingborg, Sweden in 1989, Formcook became part of JBT in 2014, by which time the company had gained a strong reputation as an innovator in contact cooking. In fact, the original concept was developed and adapted by Formcook founder, Winje Green, during a visit to the US in the company’s early years in the process becoming the first oven manufacturer to use a moving teflon belt for cooking.
Lars Håkansson, JBT’s Sweden-based Regional Application Manager for Formcook explains that the use of a teflon belt gives Formcook’s two models – the Contact Cooker and the Combi Cooker – significant advantages over other belt-based cooking systems. “The system functions much life a teflon pan at home by bringing together a teflon belt over a heating plate, and as a result the products don’t stick,” he says. “You can put egg on it and lift it off very easily. Compared with a mesh belt, the product doesn’t stick.”
The Formcook teflon system is principally used to set the surface of protein products such as chicken fillets to prevent moisture or yield loss when they move on to a main oven. “After the contact cooking, we run the chicken fillet into an oven and it will not stick to the surface because we have closed the top and bottom surfaces,” explains Håkansson.
“That makes it first of all more juicy because you have a closed surface so moisture is kept inside. Also, by not sticking to the belt, you achieve a higher yield because normally if you put a raw product on a wire belt, 2-3% of the product will stay on the belt.”