The best thing since sliced bread – how humidity measurements increase baking efficiency

Freshly baked bread
Industrial Manufacturing and Processes
Industrial Measurements

Bread has been a staple part of the diet in many countries around the world throughout recorded history, and it is one of the oldest produced foods. It is also one of the most widely consumed foods in the world, with more than 100 different types of bread available from baguettes to ciabatta to pita, rye, and sourdough. Evidence of bread making has even been found on a 14,500-year-old site in Jordan – but bread-making technology has come a very long way since then! Today, carefully controlled humidity measurements help to ensure that every industrially made loaf is a real breadwinner.  

The right humidity level helps improve baking oven efficiency

To get the perfect loaf of bread you need to ensure you’re baking at the correct temperature with the right level of humidity. To do this requires stable, reliable, and accurate measurement instruments that can help ensure optimal product quality and consistency even at very high temperatures. Without these instruments, such as the Vaisala DRYCAP® Dewpoint and Temperature Probe DMP6, it’s impossible to know the humidity level of dryers and ovens, meaning producers won’t always achieve high-quality bread and an optimal yield. With wheat supplies dwindling and costs rising, it has never been more important to achieve optimal efficiency when baking, so that bread stays on the shelves and consumers remain satisfied.  

Bread in the oven


Optimized drying operations save energy and costs

Humidity measurements are a key factor in optimized drying. If the ambient air in a baking oven contains too much water, the bread’s crust will not be as crisp as it should be and the product will spoil more easily, leading to wastage and a low yield. On the other hand, if the ambient air is too dry then the product will be too – while also wasting energy and money on overheating, thus making the baking process less sustainable. Whether the air is too dry or too moist when the humidity isn’t optimal the color, flavor, and texture of the bread will suffer and the yield will be poor.

Maintaining key humidity parameters is also critical in fluid bed drier monitoring and in spray drying optimization, where accurate monitoring helps to optimize the process, improving yields, maximizing quality, and minimizing costs. 

Bakery worker


How could humidity measurements help you?

Finding and maintaining the optimal drying conditions for your baking process is key to reducing product waste and minimizing energy use – key concerns for food producers in today’s operational environment. Humidity measurements have an important role to play in the sustainability of industrial bread-making processes, keeping producers in business and consumers happy with high-quality products. Our interactive drying simulator can help you to understand how accurate humidity measurements can enable more efficient energy use and higher quality and yields in your process – give it a try and see the difference it can make.

Food, beverage and agriculture — A healthy helping of science in every bite

Vaisala’s solutions for agriculture, food processing, retail, storage and logistics, and biogas production are all based on unparalleled measurement technology for the most demanding environments. 

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The future of food webcast

To find out more about how we’re improving the future of food with measurement technology, watch our Future of Food webcast with Jutta Hakkarainen, Director, Liquid Measurements, Vaisala; Maria Uusimaa, Director, Industrial Instruments, Vaisala and Lauri Reuter, PhD. in Biotechnology.

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