Baking & Snack - July 2021 - 18

WHITE CASTLE
Left: Dough balls
pass through a set
of rounder bars
and flour dusting
before panning.
Right: A belt
automatically
feeds dough to the
hoppers of two,
high-speed bun
dividers.
Billy Ingram, who along with Walter Anderson started
White Castle a century ago.
" The name White Castle came about because 'white'
stood for cleanliness and purity and 'castle' stood for
permanence and strength, " Mr. Rife explained. " My
great-grandfather always believed the best way to control
the quality at the counter was to control the quality
at the back door, and the best way to do that is to do
it yourself. "
Over the years, the company controlled most of its
supply chain internally, but eventually sold off a paper
linen operation that made its bags and cartons and later
its steel fabrication division that built equipment for its
restaurants. Third parties now supply all of those more
cost-effectively.
" We realized you don't have to be the best at everything, "
Mr. Rife said. " We need to focus on our core, the
meat and buns that got us here, so we don't lose sight
of what's important. Selling the fabrication business allowed
us to take those dollars and focus on the 2-by-2inch
steam-grilled Slider that people love and produce it
at an affordable price. "
Upgrading its Cincinnati bun operation, also called
the " Evendale Bakery " for the neighborhood where it's
located, began 15 years ago.
" Back in 2006, you didn't have a one-stop shop for
equipment, " said Jarrett Cook, director of manufacturing
operations. " You had to piece it all together.
When you're a 100-year-old company, you can afford
to be patient. We partnered with some pretty good
18 Baking & Snack July 2021 / www.bakingbusiness.com
companies, and that made a big difference. "
It also collaborated with consultants from The Long
Co. cooperative, which provided engineering, production
and sanitation expertise. They worked as a crossfunctional
internal team that included the bakery's
engineering, operations, sanitation and maintenance
groups, as well as White Castle's internal construction
and engineering experts. Mr. Rife said the main objective
involved reengineering the bakery, originally built
in 1964, without disrupting its supply chain.
To accomplish this feat, White Castle purchased six
acres to expand the facility by 25,000 square feet for
greater packaging, freezing and warehouse capacity. It
also provided one other essential element. The additional
space created the flexibility to reconfigure the entire
single-line operation, install equipment in stages and
never miss a beat in supplying its growing restaurant
and retail manufacturing businesses.
Specifically, the company put in a new proofer and
oven in 2011 where the old packaging department had
been. It then added new mixing and makeup equipment
in 2015 where the old proofer and oven were. Finally,
and perhaps the biggest technological challenge, it installed
high-tech packaging in 2018. During each stage,
the bakery shut down for just one week to tie the new
equipment into the existing line.
" We made sure we had a full freezer prior to each
shutdown, and we had help from the Rensselaer bakery, "
Mr. Cook said.
Although the projects took longer than the company
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Baking & Snack - July 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Baking & Snack - July 2021

Baking & Snack - July 2021 - Intro
Baking & Snack - July 2021 - 1
Baking & Snack - July 2021 - 2
Baking & Snack - July 2021 - 3
Baking & Snack - July 2021 - 4
Baking & Snack - July 2021 - 5
Baking & Snack - July 2021 - 6
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