Chocolate is a dispersion of solid particles like cocoa and sugar in a cocoa butter matrix. The size of the particles determines the mouth-feel of chocolate and the melting behavior on the tongue.
Therefore, the evaluation of particle size and shape is crucial in chocolate production in order to obtain a high-quality product.
In order to avoid over-milling, which would require the addition of further expensive cocoa butter, it is essential to be able to accurately track particle size and shape over time and to be able to quickly adjust process parameters.
With the help of the SOPAT ChocoScope the shortest grinding time needed to achieve the optimum particle size distribution could be defined to achieve a high-quality production result.
In addition, the measured data obtained inline by the SOPAT ChocoScope were compared with the results obtained by laser diffraction.
In this white paper photo-optical detection of solid particles in cocoa liquor has been applied using the SOPAT ChocoScope. Time-resolved measurements of particle size and shape during wet-milling were used to determine the milling time needed to reach the final particle size distribution. Finally, results obtained using the SOPAT system are compared to results from laser diffraction.