Foster’s Bakery has purchased new equipment that has increased its sourdough production by 2,000 loaves per day.

The system, which Foster’s purchased from Bakerlink, comprises two temperature-controlled mixer tanks, each with a 1.5 tonne capacity.

Foster’s managing director John Foster said the bakery’s existing sourdough production system was not enough to allow the two days’ maturation time required.

He added that the team had previously made “a few mistakes” such as forgetting to feed a dough and therefore holding up production.

“We also misjudged the temperature and saw massive amounts of uncontrollable over-fermenting sourdough overflowing across the bakery,” he added.

The new system controls the quantity of flour and water in the batch, as well as temperature and time, producing the sourdough mix at a warm temperature in up to six stages with controlled mixing action and bowl side scrape.

If the sourdough is not needed immediately, it chills it to a dormant state automatically and, when required, a baker can call for the amount needed on the touchscreen panel at the mixer and it will be piped straight into the bowl, mitigating the need to weigh or carry buckets of dough. 

When one tank runs low, it automatically switches to the other tank, allowing the production cycle to start again.

The bakery now has a total of four 1.5 tonne tanks for sourdough, one 200kg tank for dark rye sourdough and a small tub for gluten-free sourdough.