Prepared Meals Resources

Prepared meals represent one of the fastest-growing sectors of food manufacturing – manufacturers need to look ahead and prepare their food production lines with the best technology to meet the job. At Quantum Technical Services, food automation for prepared meals stands at the heart of what we do, and we offer an extensive line of machines known for their efficiency and reliability.

Automation is essential for the future of food production. With major giants in the industry embracing automation fully, every year a company neglects to upgrade their machines puts them another year behind their biggest competition. Offering a slew of benefits, automation isn’t just the future; it is the present reality of the industry.

A fully automated prepared meals production system benefits companies through stark advances in quality, efficiency, and safety. Learn more about the benefits of automating your production line in one of the most lucrative categories of food manufacturing.

Why Companies Benefit from a Fully Automated Prepared Meals Production System

A fully automated prepared meals production system can provide tremendous benefits to companies that leverage them. Demand for these meals is high – through complete automation, you can expand your production substantially.

According to Statista, prepared meals represented the top selling category within grocery store deli departments in 2019, generating over $15 billion in revenue. Whether it be prepared salads, appetizers, sandwiches, soup, or more, Americans are drawn to the convenience of simple meals that don’t require the effort of preparing and cooking a meal from scratch.

Needless to say, prepared meals represent one of the most lucrative channels in food manufacturing. There will always be a high demand for prepared meals, as they are easy to cook, easy to store, and offer a tasty, simple option for meals that fit into our busy lives.

But why should you use a fully automated prepared meals production system?

Safety – Food safety remains a high concern for the industry at large, as recalls can not only be expensive but hazardous to customers. Food allergies are equally important to end consumers, and can be controlled with greater ease through automation. But safety doesn’t end at the grocery store – automation also helps control the unplanned downtime of workplace accidents.

Reduced Costs – Human resources take up tremendous costs for food manufacturers due to hiring challenges and management. Unlike traditional manufacturing line operators, machines never have to sleep – they can operate all day with routine maintenance and cleaning. The return on investment for an automated food manufacturing machine is generally met within two years.

Control Bottlenecks – Bottlenecks in the food production process can form naturally during a production run. Automation allows for these operational inefficiencies to be controlled, ensuring productivity is maximized.

Quality – Good food manufacturing machines provide consistent results every time they are turned on. Laborers working near a conveyor can be less reliable over the course of a shift. Using automation ensures that the product you are creating is consistent every time it is prepared, with equal amounts of ingredients placed precisely where they are programmed to do so.

Quantum offers best-in-class automation for prepared meals to meet the needs of today’s savvy customers. Read more about the machines that make us a globally trusted brand for food automation.

Quantum Prepared Meals Products

For over 30 years, Quantum Technical Services has served as a trusted partner in food automation. Beginning in the frozen pizza industry, our production systems have advanced to include baked goods, prepared meals, pizzas, and beyond.

Cheese and Topping Applicators

Quantum’s topping applicators are designed for the application of larger toppings such as meats, vegetables, dry ingredients, or cheese into packaging for prepared meals.

The TC-5 Series features cantilevered design, crank handle rake height adjustment, touch screen controls with diagnostics, and 20 recipe slots. It also includes a reclaim system to reduce wasted ingredients.

Our MLT2000 Series topping applicator deposits a variety of toppings such as cheese, IQF vegetables, and meats onto product at speeds up to 60 feet per minute, per lane. The no tray, no fill capability reduces waste, increases productivity, and ensures consistent coverage across a wide spectrum of meals, including prepared meals. It is designed to cantilever over existing lines.

All of our target applicators offer intuitive, user-friendly interfaces, and are built for simple cleanup with sanitary design. Following buckets allow for these systems to fit neatly over existing conveyors, which can be adjusted depending on the product in question. We can custom engineer conveyors and prepared meal machines to fit the needs of your production line.

Sauce Applicators

Depending on the type of prepared meals you are serving up, Quantum’s sauce applicators come in two types: waterfall, and targeted sauce applicators.

Our wide range of target sauce applicators are designed to apply sauce with extreme accuracy to the surfaces of food items using the same technology in our topping applicators. Because the consistency of sauce differs substantially from dry ingredients, our in-house testing services can help fine-tune our systems to match the viscosity of your sauces, whether those be pesto, tomato sauce, garlic butter, or any number of related sauces.

Quantum’s QTMC5 conveyorized target sauce applicator deposits sauce onto products at speeds up to 80 feet per minute. It is compact, simple to set up, and easy to operate system that is USDA compliant, washdown capable, and easy to clean. It is a perfect solution for single lane, wholesale production, test kitchens, and R&D Facilities!

The QTPP series uses a USDA-approved patented sauce applicator to evenly apply sauce while maintaining a sauce-free border. Using a cantilevered targeting system, it is perfect for depositing sauce onto panini sandwiches, French bread products, bagels, and more. It can be positioned over existing conveyor belts. Our QTSA series is similar, but uses a conveyorized target sauce applicator to produce the same results, and thus can’t be positioned over an existing conveyor belt.

The QTJK series utilizes three different sauce applicators over a three-lane conveyor system. With state-of-the-art motor drive technology, the conveyor output section reliably transfers products to down-line equipment.

Prepared meals necessitate precise amounts of sauce to provide the ideal flavor and nutrition your customers expect. Our sauce applicators are designed around your production line to deliver the best results.

Meat/Pepperoni Slicers

Pepperoni, bacon, sausage, ham – regardless of the type of meat you’re looking to apply into your prepared meals, Quantum has the machine to provide clean, even cuts directly onto the surface of whatever food you are manufacturing.

Our QTSS Series Pendulum Pepperoni Slicer uses sophisticated sensor and drive technology to accurately slice and target product in multiple lane configurations. This makes it perfect for depositing slices of meat onto a multiple lane tray meal line. With production rates of up to 60 feet per minute and an intuitive touch screen interface, operators can directly control parameters that affect the conveyor speed and topping placement.

For tray meals and sandwiches, our TP-2 series is ideal for deli meats and breads. Application is designed around pattern specifications – if your production line is designed around multiple types of products, these can be changed to suit your day-to-day needs.

The Quantum Difference

Food manufacturing is evolving at a rapid pace, and automation stands to change the industry forever. Do you have the machines you need to keep up with the competition?

You may be looking to replace a single machine, or even might be looking for a complete overhaul of your production line. Regardless of your challenge, we’re here to help. Quantum provides affordable, effective, American-made machines that are safe to operate, efficient, and simple to clean. Our machines have given us a global reputation as a leader in food automation machines.

Are you ready to see what Quantum can do for you? Contact us today to learn more about our services.