Craft bakers often work with doughs that need long retarding. These doughs need the right climate to support fermentation. A retarder/proofer serves as a great tool, offering craft bakers the ability to change and maintain climates.

“The solution is where the baker wants to go. They have to plan production and support. That’s the first conversation,” says Martin Boyd, vice president of equipment sales and process consulting for TMB Baking Equipment. “You need to plan it out properly.”

For example, it can make sense to position your hot ovens on one side of your production room and a proofer/retarder on the other. “You are looking for quality, consistency and dependability, so when you make that investment, you are partnering with people who help you design and build to your desired layout,” Boyd says.

TMB Baking uses stainless steel and partners with a panel factory to custom make bakery equipment to desired specifications. Being made in the USA lowers shipping costs, as well. TMB Baking R-P systems can be configured to accommodate anything from one single rack to hundreds of double racks, or every option in between. The 3½-inch insulated cam-lock stainless steel wall and ceiling panels (with reinforced, diamond-plate base doors) provide a perfect environment to condition your dough. The box is stainless steel, inside and out, for longevity in humid and corrosive (sourdoughs) environments.

“A good retarder/proofer is like a good co-worker,” says Boyd. “You know what you’re going to get every day.”

Mike Mathis, sales development manager at Baxter Manufacturing, points out the proofer/retarder is also a valuable time saver, allowing bakers to get a leg up on their day’s production.

The Baxter Retarder/Proofer helps maximize square footage and add flexibility to production scheduling for small bakeries, large supermarkets or institutions. The space-saving combination eliminates the need for additional equipment by combining all features of a proofing cabinet and a retarder into one unit. It has door-mounted, eye-level digital controls to let you precisely set temperature and humidity for the proofing cycle, as well as set the retarding temperature to meet the requirements of your product. A programmable 24-hour timer allows programming of both retarding and proofing cycle settings up to one week in advance.

“Bakers want equipment that is automated,” Mathis says. “You also want to look for equipment that doesn’t use any type of filters. A problem with that can be a nightmare from a maintenance standpoint. It has to be maintained or it won’t work properly.”

No exposed moving parts, fans or hot surfaces are in the Baxter Retarder/Proofer, which enhances operator safety. The unique humidification system creates moisture using a nozzle to spray water onto a heated metal plate. Temperature and moisture levels are controlled to eliminate drying during the proofing cycle. This flash humidity system enables the operator great flexibility. “Bakers want the controls to be easy.”