by Blake Sandnes
Bulk & Powder Solids

Vegan Plant Protein Company Sees Quality Grind With RMS Roller-Grinder

Plantable Foods, a B2B startup food technology company based in San Diego, California, worked with RMS Roller-Grinder to obtain machinery for their new facility based in West Texas.

With a goal to develop the most functional and applicable plant-based protein in the world using scalable and sustainable aqua-farming and extraction technologies, Plantable Foods needed a specialized powder grinder machine to grind duckweed. Duckweed is a very good source of protein, and the idea behind using duckweed is to replace the nutrition and function of eggs with a plant-based source.

In September 2022, the company began procuring equipment for their new facility. During the design phase of the new facility, they worked with an engineer who recommended RMS Roller-Grinder, as they had had a very good experience with them in the past.

The Problem: Shearing and Grinding Duckweed for a Quality Product

A hand holds bright green duckweed over a bucketDuckweed is six times more efficient than soy due to its protein content, has a perfect amino acid composition, and is a rich source of vitamins and minerals. This all makes it ideal as a nutritional supplement. To create the desired powder product, the material needs to be ground and sheared by the machine.

Initially, the company considered using a standard blade mill for their powder grinder, which would have completed the shearing action. However, duckweed is extremely delicate, meaning it would have clogged any funnel going into the machine. To achieve the desired volume, the company knew they needed a better solution.

Although the Plantable Foods team had some apprehension that a roller-grinder would not be able to meet their needs, speaking with RMS gave the company confidence that other similar processes have been done before, which provided the reassurance they needed to move forward with RMS.

The Solution: A Powder Grinder With a Custom-Designed Funnel

When Plantable Foods VP of Engineering Tom Bartalucci spoke with Blake at RMS, he learned that the team would design a roller-grinder that provided the grinding and shearing action that the company needed, but also allowed a wide inlet into the mill. RMS worked directly with Plantable Foods to design and build a funnel that met their requirements for their powder grinder.

Plantable Foods also needed to add water to mill in-process, so the RMS team helped them design and build this water distribution system into the roller-grinder to create their final product.

The Results: A Reliable Machine and High-Quality Product

Duckweed in a bin after being processed by a RMS millAlthough the company is still in its initial phase of using the RMS Roller-Grinder, they note that the power grinder machine is running great and has been very reliable in terms of performance.

Plantable Foods has also made a couple adjustments on the distances between rollers. They were able to do this because an RMS technician came on-site and trained them in the process. With our equipment and support, the company was able to achieve the grind they needed for their product.

The company notes that the machine is pretty much self-regulating, and that all their team really needs to do to operate it is press a button. The machine is simple to use, and Tom Bartalucci notes that even the adjustments were easy to make after training from the RMS technicians.

The Future: Continuing Performance and Support

RMS working closely with the Plantable team during their mill setupThe VP of Engineering for Plantable Foods, Tom Bartalucci, noted that the two RMS technicians who visited on-site after the machine was delivered were “fantastic”, and helped them get the machine going in addition to training them on standard use as well as important grind adjustments.

Although the company initially had a communication issue between the machine and the internet, the RMS technicians were able to fix the problem. The company says support from RMS has been ongoing–they received check-in emails a couple days after the initial machine installation and a month after installation, letting them know that if they needed anything, RMS was there.

See What RMS Roller-Grinder Can Do for You

RMS Roller-Grinder is committed to helping clients reach their goals with the right machinery. Whether you need a powder grinder or something different, our team is here to make it happen. Contact us today to learn more about our custom solutions for innovative companies that need the best in machinery and support.

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