Intelligent Solutions to Protect Your Bakery & Oven from Fires
Ron Renyolds May 2021Oven & Bakery - Fire Protection
TO PROTECT YOUR BAKERY & OVEN FROM FIRES
Nearly 50% of Combustible Dust Incidences Happen In Factories Producing Food Products. Learn How to Secure
Your Process and Keep Your Oven Operational.
In the days following December 14, 1758,
Count Morozzo of Turin, Italy, sat down to
his afternoon antipasto and immediately
noticed the absence of Grissini Torinesi to
twirl though his acciughe al verde. He was
informed the Giacomelli Bakery, his favorite,
had spontaneously exploded.
A man of science, the Count investigated the cause of this
disaster, and the conclusions drawn resulted in the first ever
recorded combustible flour dust explosion, and he developing the
combustion reaction model we still use today. Quick Suppression
Systems (QSS) utilizing infrared detection and water mist
designed for the baking industry are the next great innovation to
keep commercial ovens in continuous production and safe from a
According to the Dust Safety Science Academy’s 2020 Mid-Year
Combustible Dust Incident Report, Food Products materials
have been responsible for the fastest rising cause of combustible
dust incidents. In fact, Food Materials have consistently been the
leading category of all combustible materials under study, even
more than wood product materials. Between 2017 and 2020, fires
caused by food material saw a dramatic 11% increase.
The science of combustible dust mitigation, or the prevention of dust explosion, is 235 years old. And now, nearly two-anda-half centuries later, baking science has not stopped evolving at CV Technology, the world’s fastest and most reliable infrared combustible ignition threat detection system.
IT IS WELL KNOWN WITHIN THE CULINARY
WORLD THAT COOKING IS AN ART, BUT
BAKING IS A SCIENCE.
The science of combustible dust mitigation, or the prevention
of dust explosion, is 235 years old. And now, nearly two-anda-half centuries later, baking science has not stopped evolving
at CV Technology, the world’s fastest and most reliable infrared
combustible ignition threat detection system.
Until recently, there was a long-standing myth among bakery
equipment suppliers and plant operators, that other than good
housekeeping, dust control, and removing as many ignition
sources as possible from the baking environment, there was
nothing more you could do to protect your ovens.
Fires and explosions can break out in any part of the process
plant, but most commonly during product loading and
unloading, product transfer and storage. The most catastrophic
fires, however, are the ones that occur the least; these are the
conditions where the most critical piece of machinery blows
up. When the grinder, hammermill, or commercial oven are at
the epicenter, the result can be an extensive loss for the plant.
Production downtime due to critical equipment damage,
injuries, or worse can have devastating effects.
If you are a high-volume baker, using high-output conveyor
transport bands, it is inevitable that you will burn product;
more seldom, but still presenting a huge risk, you will start a
fire. This situation could lead to a partial or full destruction of
the most important piece of capital in your plant, the oven.
Bulk material handling moves ingredients from the silo to the
mixers, sifters, and grinders. If additional sweeteners, starches
or binders are added to the mix changing the shape of the
ingredient, reducing the overall size of the granule or flaking
it, the Minimum Ignition Temperature (MIT) and the Minimum
Ignition Energy (MIE) can demonstrate an increase in its
The product types, by ingredient, content and mix, are more
susceptible to fires than others. Dry powders, oils, fats, butter,
shortening, sugars and sugar additives are all contributors of
Variables such as transport speed, ventilation, and fuel sources
caked inside the oven with accumulated dust, crumbs and
grease can pose highly potential risks. Combined with a sudden
belt stoppage, that ‘dinner roll’ now has the combustible
How long a specific product type stays inside the oven while on
the belt, and at a specific temperature, can also creates a highpotential risk. Low risk baking temperature levels are typically
less than 480°F (250°C), and include items such as pre-bake
items, which range between 370°F to 430°F (190°C to 220°C).
Mid-level risk temperatures fall between 480°F (250°C), and
500°F (260°C). Lastly, high risk items are often in excess of 500°F
THREE KINDS OF OVENS
2. DIRECT GAS
We have thoughtfully applied industrial protection savvy toward consumable food product applications in order to guard against
threats that are controllable or uncontrollable.
If it is possible that the safe operating temperature limit of the oven can be exceeded, or if oven processes combusitible
material, provide an excess temperature llimit control requiring a manual reset, that is independent of automatic or manual
Pay particular attention to cleanliness at heaters with steam coils, housings and ductwork since these are the hottest spots
where charring and eventual ignition are most likely.
Measure the ventilation rate before making any process changes that would affect the rate of ventilation required. These
include changing the character of the work by composition or weight, increasing batch loads, baking times, temperatures and
Symptoms of Inadequate Ventilation: A cold exhaust duct or stack while the oven is operating typically indicates reversal of
flow in the exhaust and suggests inadequate ventilation.
Whether your business is pizza shells, bread loaves, muffins,
bagels, biscuits, cookies, buns, rolls or crispened snack foods, or
a combination of all or some of them, BakeScan™ will detect
overheated, glowing and burning product on the transport band
transporting product out of the oven.
OvenGuard™ conversely detects and suppresses fire incidents
inside the oven, at the outlet of the oven, and extinguishes embers
and flames in the extraction ducts. Stopping the fire at the inlet
of the extraction ducts is critical, as they act as superhighways
that will rapidly carry the firestorm throughout other areas of the
plant, such as the warehouse, where finished product is stored and
the chance of igniting a secondary dust explosion is high if good
housekeeping standards are not maintained.
Both BakeScan™ and OvenGuard™ deliver ultra-fast acting, quick
suppression or extinguishing solutions consisting of a full cone
mist of water depending on the system design. Both systems
are custom configured and flexible enough to adjust to your
production requirements, as noted in FM Loss Prevention Data
Sheets and NFPA Standards if you plan on using the same oven
for varying product and ingredient mixture.
The IntuVision™ controller is the nerve center behind
BakeScan™ and OvenGuard™. IntuVision™ provides
constant reporting and analysis in real time of the number
of incidents, when, and under what flow conditions to best
run each of your baked products for maximum continuous
output and will trigger a suppression solution in case of a
Best yet, its solid-state build comes standard with 4
protection zones, and the ability to accommodate
16 zones with one controller. It also can be operated
remotely, or by phone app. So, a plant can protect its
capital investment across a process array of ovens,
grinders, mixers, conveyors, exhaust ducts, and dust
collectors from a single controller. It also can connect
and route commands to your PLC for extended safety
responsiveness and operational effectiveness.