Pan Pepín on Wednesday officially announced the establishment of a new $2 million, 10,800 square-foot facility dedicated to the production of its “Planitas” brand of wheat tortillas.
The new plant will create an unspecified number of new direct and indirect jobs as a result of subcontracting in areas such as construction, floors, cooling services, and propane gas lines, among others.
Located on the premises of Pan Pepín in Bayamón, the new machinery specialized in making tortillas, is built in stainless steel and is manufactured by Lawrence Equipment, leaders in machines for tortilla production. It comprises the latest in technology and is the most advanced and larger on the island for this type of manufacturing, company executives said.
The operation of this equipment allows to produce approximately 810 dozen “Planitas” per hour.
This new machinery brings innovation in its category to the local market, they said. An aspect that distinguishes its operation is the Accuview system, a computerized method that uses a technique of visual inspection to evaluate each tortilla leaving the production line. This permits evaluating each according to its size, shape and color, among other things.
The system also automatically rejects any tortilla that does not meet the specifications before packaging, ensuring high quality standards. The line also offers flexibility to work a variety of products in sizes ranging from 6 ” to 12,” as well as different flavors: original, whole wheat and white whole wheat.
“The response that consumers have given to ‘Planitas’ has been exceptional. Their support and interest of having fresh and high standards products has led us to make this investment that will bring to the market tortillas of superior value,” said Mario Somoza, president of Pan Pepín.
“By using our distribution system we will ensure that the consumer receives them as fresh as Pan Pepín,” he added.
The plant has already been certified with Level 3 SQF (Safe Quality Food), internationally recognized, independent food safety standard, which is administered by the Safe Quality Food Institute (SQFI). Level 3 is the highest that can be obtained in control and guarantees certifications.
“Planitas” wheat tortillas have as primary ingredient a base made with the specifications of softness, taste, texture and shelf life. In addition, the primary ingredients used to produce “Planitas” are from local suppliers, company officials said.