Baking & Snack - July 2020 - 26

ALADDIN BAKERS

Left: Aladdin Bakers
supplies an array of
flavored wraps and
tortillas for both the
foodservice and
retail markets.
Right: The cracker
and baked snack line
features a new, versatile
48-inch (1,200-mm) wide
makeup system that
maximizes the capacity
of an 80-ft. tunnel oven

"Expanding our retail presence is the one thing we had
been working on, and it's our next push," Ms. Watkinson
said. "We're looking for new branding and see new opportunities. We have a nice distribution network, but we
plan to go further nationwide with our retail products.
That's where our next initiative will be."

Specializing in everything
Mr. Ayoub started his own company in the 1970s as a
17-year-old making pitas by hand and delivering them
locally throughout his neighborhood. Eventually, he
acquired Aladdin, another baking company, which allowed him to build up the business that led to automating production. He later changed the name of the company to Aladdin Bakers.
"Aladdin Bakers has become my life's work," he said.
Since then, being a one-stop shop has been its key
to success.
"What separates us is that we make a wide variety of
products, so our customers don't have to deal with multiple vendors," Mr. Ayoub said. "They can get everything
they need from one place. With each of these products,
we have a variety of flavors and packaging sizes. The
combinations are endless."
Overall, the operation houses 18 lines, ranging from
semi-automated bagel production with rack ovens to a
fully automated panini line that turns out up to 16,000
pieces an hour.
"Joe started the bakery making everything by
hand," Ms. Watkinson said. "Before we automate anything, we make sure the integrity of the product is
not compromised."
In many ways, Aladdin Bakers is a classic Brooklyn
bakery occupying more than 100,000 square feet of
space in 17 buildings on three city blocks. And if
Mr. Ayoub ever found a genie in a bottle, he knows what
his first request would be.
"I wish we had more straight space to put in more automated lines because we are limited by the length of the
buildings," he observed.
As the saying goes, wishes are granted only in fairy

26 Baking & Snack July 2020 / www.bakingbusiness.com

tales - or by moving to a major facility outside the
city - but Aladdin Bakers, which is committed to its
Brooklyn roots, had to play with the hand it was dealt.
The bakery has L-shaped and U-shaped lines and conveyors that are located next to the oven that's pumping
out baked snacks on the first floor and taking wraps or
tortillas to the mezzanine-level packaging department.
"The efficient use of space is the heart of our operation,"
Ms. Watkinson said. "All of our equipment is strategically
placed. Almost every time we made an equipment purchase,
we had to make sure it could be moved when we needed to
make a specific product on a daily or weekly basis."

"WE'VE BEEN
TRENDSETTERS IN THE
INDUSTRY FOREVER. AND
EVERY FEW YEARS, WE'VE
COME UP WITH A NEW
PRODUCT LINE."
Joseph Ayoub, Aladdin Bakers

Popping open a bottleneck
More than 200 people work in the bakery that runs
24/7, although shifts vary depending on production
demand and customer orders. While many lines are
running, others receive routine sanitation and preventive maintenance.
In addition to Mr. Ayoub and Ms. Watkinson, key
management personnel include Donald Guzzi, chief finance officer; Luis Esquivel, chief engineer; Esperanza
Tapia, sanitation manager; Guillermo Flores, director of
production; Barbara Adams, human resources manager;
and Wendy Perez, customer service manager.
Inside the bakery, Ms. Watkinson noted that Aladdin
Bakers upgraded the cracker and baked snack line with
a 48-inch (1,200-mm) wide Rademaker makeup line to


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Baking & Snack - July 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Baking & Snack - July 2020

Baking & Snack - July 2020 - 1
Baking & Snack - July 2020 - 1
Baking & Snack - July 2020 - 2
Baking & Snack - July 2020 - 3
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