Rather than focus on one major SKU, companies can shift towards multiple product variations to cater to a wider range of people. A popular product could have extensions like a milk chocolate version, a ruby chocolate offshoot, a sugar-free option, dairy-free variations and more. Rather than stick with limited flavors that define the product, the product can offer a wide range of flavors, nutritional values and omitted ingredients to appeal to a much wider segment of the market. With product quality improvements and new options continually emerging, companies can drive higher profits and increase their word-of-mouth reach from excited consumers.

Innovative changes in bar and chocolate machinery design are enabling plants to be more flexible and adaptable. Being able to quickly change between product coatings is a key requirement. Increased agility of product lines allows for faster changeover and better speed to market. Utilizing continuous melters that are built to ensure this level of flexibility are a key component in manufacturing lines that help multinational brands and co-manufacturing outfits keep up with the rapidly changing consumer trends and boost their bottom line.

Emerging trends of product variations

There is a major shift towards more product variations among food manufacturers, including the bar and chocolate industry. A popular product used to be ran in large batches. Now, that same product might have a handful of flavor variations and even special seasonal runs, causing manufacturers to shorten product cycles. Bar and chocolate manufacturers are looking to increase SKUs that provide variations on flavors, health benefits and ingredients.

In 2019, the value of domestic food market shipments in the US was $794.4 billion and healthy variations of food are currently driving growth. Companies are also working to plan ahead by examining the shifts in popular flavors. Being prepared to test product ideas and take new products to market faster will allow your plant to adapt to consumer trends as they are changing.

Cracking the challenges of changeovers

With trends moving to more product variants, frequent and efficient product changeovers are crucial. This can be incredibly time-consuming with large machines and melters that are difficult to clean. Typically, older equipment isn’t made with sanitation in mind, which means they aren’t equipped for the required level of production flexibility.

Rapid melting, ease of sanitation (especially allergen cleanability) and minimal downtime are the three pillars of producing multiple SKUs. If bar and chocolate manufacturers are going to move towards product variations, they will need to replace their old machines with agile chocolate processing machines that are hygienically built for easy cleaning and accessibility.

Allergen Threats

Trying to push old equipment through fast changeovers can lead to dangerous cross contamination of ingredients. Allergen cleaning is crucial to customer health, avoiding reputational damage to brands and expensive product recalls. Nuts, dairy and gluten are all very high on the list of ingredients that can be dangerous to certain people, even in their trace forms. Changeovers require all surfaces of the melter that comes into contact with the product needs to be completely sanitized.

A flexible melter will allow for fast and simple cleaning, improved allergen changeovers and the ability to switch between masses and coatings quickly.

Thorough allergen cleaning is time-consuming and interrupts production scheduling. Chocolate melters that are optimised for cleaning offer innovative designs for rapid removal of product-contact parts. When chocolate melters are easy to clean, downtime is minimized and productivity can stay high.

Mobile features for flexible positioning

A portable and compact melter will allow cleaning away from the line for less disruption and avoids the need to water in sensitive production areas. It also saves space and allows for designing an efficient plant process flow

Introducing our newest highly flexible and compact Melter V20

As a bar or chocolate manufacturer, you’re probably already planning ahead by and preparing for the changing trends of tomorrow’s market. It is very challenging to find continuous chocolate melters that are able to offer easy cleaning features and fast, efficient melting capabilities.

PTL designs for the flexibility you need.

Designed to effectively melt multiple SKUs, manage allergens and minimize downtime, the new Melter V20 is compact and flexible, so you can count on them to be fast and cost-effective. The special hygienic grid design provides high melt rates while being removable for thorough cleaning.

Enhance your production flexibility with the PTL Melter V20

The PTL Melter V20 is designed to help you meet the industry challenges of shorter product cycles and multiple product variations by supporting:

  • Easy accessibility for cleaning and changeovers
  • Supplement existing melting equipment for increased throughput
  • Shorter runs for testing specialty product variations
  • Non-core product melting
  • Short product pipelines
  • Reduced downtime

With up to 72 kilowatts of power and innovative design, we can help you improve production speed while saving energy and reducing your production downtime. Get ready for a new level of melting performance and flexibility with the PTL Melter V20.




Bar and chocolate production facility space is valuable and comes at a premium. Large machinery used to mix, melt, form, cook, cool and package take up floor space quickly. When outfitting your factory modular and scalable machines are of utmost importance to ensure that processing floor space can be utilized efficiently. Aside from wasting space, poor layout can hinder process flow and effective cleaning. Easy access also makes cleaning efficient and minimises risk of product recalls.

What are the benefits of selecting compact and portable chocolate machinery?

Flexibility for more product types

Diverse product options are important to today’s consumers, so brands are turning to machines capable of producing a wide variety of flavor changes and SKU variations.

Current consumer trends are turning towards more varieties of a single product over one product produced en masse. Compact machinery enables creating a higher number of product variants. With smaller chocolate processing machines that are easier to clean and offer a more efficient capacity-per-square-foot, quicker and smaller runs are feasible.

Reduced overhead

Factory space requires a large capital investment and incurs operating costs for heating, cooling, cleaning etc.. Investing in compact machinery means less floor space is needed. Rather than expand the factory to make more space (and cope with increased overhead), companies can keep their costs as low as possible by optimizing floor space with smaller, mobile machinery.

Better equipment placement for improved line productivity

Equipment layout affects production output directly by limiting maximum possible throughput and indirectly by affecting downtime required for cleaning and maintenance

For example, having a portable chocolate melter placed close to the use point minimise pipe run length and enables removal of the machine for cleaning

Freedom and agility built into your facility floor

Factories that are less pressed for space have the freedom to test out new products for market and rearrange as needed. Compact, multi-purpose melters allow for shifting factory plans and lines, always ensuring efficient flow of materials.

Smaller machines that are capable of multi-use and easily cleaned can help companies shift gears dynamically when they notice trends in their market.

How can bar and chocolate factory space be optimized?

Wasted space is something bar and chocolate manufacturers should avoid at all costs. The following strategies can help you make the most out of the space and flexibility of the machines you have.

  • Single-use equipment can be swapped out for fewer multi-purpose machines
  • Old, low-capacity machines can be replaced with compact, high-throughput machines
  • Minimise distance of product pipelines by positioning processing equipment close to use points.
  • Choose equipment easy to disassemble and move to cleaning areas, minimizing in-situ cleaning

Smaller, more compact chocolate processing machines are inexpensive compared to the larger machines. These low-risk machines are ideal when the larger machines performing the same functions need to be replaced or supplemented.

Why you should invest in compact chocolate melters for your facility

With smaller chocolate melters, power doesn’t need to be compromised. You can purchase efficient machines that provide key benefits in improving line productivity and delivering consistent quality.

Modular Design: Ensure the efficient flow of raw materials from storage areas to processing equipment with the ability to fit compact machines close to other large pieces of equipment.

Less Piping: Pipework can be minimized by positioning melting equipment close to use points, reducing cleaning time, cost and complexity.

Easier Cleaning: Cleaning can take place out of the way of the main lines when melters are mobile and designed for easy disassembly for deep cleaning.

Reduced Footprint:  These condensed and modular machines reduce on wasted physical factory space through innovative designs.

Agility: Companies can be more adaptable to new ideas or changing customer needs when machinery is smaller and more flexible in nature. The ability to re-adjust means implementing new product ideas are cheaper with an improved speed to market.

Reduce your equipment physical footprint by up to 45% with the new compact PTL Melter V20

PTL know from our discussions with engineering experts at multinational brands and co-manufacturing operations that space comes at a premium on your bar or chocolate production floor and we are working to provide solutions that maximize what you have.

To that end, we have a new and improved version of our popular high-performance continuous chocolate melters and it still has the features our customers love including:

  • Easy cleaning and changeovers with easily accessible and removable parts
  • Compact, self-contained, space-saving mobile design
  • Multi-use capabilities
  • Increased production capacity
  • Radically smaller footprint than the tank/kettle strategy
  • Next to use-point placement options (no long pipe runs)

This innovative, space-saving compact chocolate melter is ready to launch. Join us for the official unveiling to learn more about the PTL Melter v20. We can help you save space with compact continuous melters and utilize your factory to its fullest potential.




Improving the bottom line is of particular importance for any bar or chocolate production plant. Getting the most from your production process is essential to improving profitability. In order to improve their return on investment (ROI), multinational brands and co-manufacturers require compact, powerful and efficient equipment that:

  • Save factory floor space
  • Reduce energy costs
  • Improve process efficiency
  • Offer mobility
  • Minimise allergen cleaning time
  • Provide multi-use changeover functionality

Bar and chocolate processing machinery that offer more flexibility shouldn’t have to compromise power. By saving space and reducing downtime, an investment in efficient process equipment can offer a high output that leads to a much better return on investment (ROI). In the following section, we list some common ways to maximize the ROI from your chocolate equipment:

Getting the most from your production process

The key to getting the most from your production process is to identify any process bottlenecks to target equipment upgrades.

Reduce line bottlenecks

With chocolate production lines there is often a single machine in the system that limits throughput on an entire line, examples include:

  • Preparing or mixing of raw ingredients
  • Melting or coating products
  • Cooling bar products after forming or before coating
  • Cutting bar products to size
  • Packaging

However more than often, the bottlenecks occur with cooling or heating products. With more powerful machines, these processes can be completed faster, keeping up with the rest of production.

It’s important to regularly access and replace or supplement equipment that are causing bottlenecks with more powerful and efficient versions. The increased production output will really make a difference on your bottom line and offer a solid ROI.

Leverage strategic factory floor placement

With a mobile compact melter, the machine can be positioned in a strategic place to reduce the product pipeline length and enable removal for wet cleaning. A well-placed portable machine will have a smaller footprint, keeping overall energy costs lower.

Obtain higher chocolate melt rates

A smaller melter shouldn’t mean lower output. With an efficiently designed continuous melting system, the process can vastly improve your production line by increasing downstream rates resulting in more throughput. In fact, mobile machines can also be used to supplement existing melting equipment, increasing the overall production levels.

PTL’s Melter V20, for example, features a specialized grid and agitation for a better melt rate (up to 125% higher than previous melters).

Endless production possibilities

There is a lot of competition within the bar and chocolate production industries to increase flavor options and product varieties. With a powerful and adaptable machine, you can switch ingredients over faster to produce multiple SKUs.

Hygienic design, particularly allergen cleanability, is a key concern when you are trying to swap out products for smaller runs while managing downtime.

Our recently launched PTL Melter V20 is a fit-for-purpose melter designed to melt multiple SKUs, manage allergens and minimize downtime.

Invest in equipment power

There is no substitute for raw power when it comes to heating or cooling equipment.

Not all chocolate melting machines are made equally. PTL’s continuous melters are powerful enough to provide a high melt rate. Selecting the correct heat source is a key consideration in the operating costs of the machine. On board electrical heating, gas fired heating or drawing from the plant’s hot water supply should all be compared

Improve ROI with the powerful PTL Melter V20

We are proud to introduce our newest version of our continuous melter. This unique melter is getting a lot of attention from factory owners and engineers because it is compact, flexible and powerful.

  • With up to 72 kilowatts of power, the PTL Melter v20 is going to get the job done.
  • Choose from electric, steam or gas to power the heating
  • Specialized melt grids and agitating technology ensures a higher melt rate.

Designed with used feedback from multinational brands and co-manufacturers in an intensive R&D process – this machine can provide your facility with the ROI you are looking for in your next purchase.

You can schedule a personal 1:1 demo of the melter with the PTL team here.