Stefan van den Hanenberg has been one of the faithful since generation one. Stefan is Operations Director of Dalco, and he had no doubts when it was time to order a third cooker for a line dedicated to processed vegetarian products. He chose the third generation GEA CookStar. His first CookStar has cooked to perfection since 1999, and number two already has more than 10 productive years under its belt.

Customer profile

Dalco is a Dutch family business that exports to Germany, Scandinavia, Cyprus and Greece. They process poultry parts, hamburgers, vegetarian products and biological meat products for retail, food service and QSR (Quick Serve Restaurant) customers.

"The growth opportunities are in added value products. I know this oven can deliver."— Stefan Van Den Hanenberg

The challenge

Talking of belts, Stefan is quick to point out, “Our first generation CookStar is still running on its very first steel belt! And it’s never had unplanned downtime in around 90,000 trouble-free hours. How’s that for reliability”. His second generation machine, which runs alongside the first, is a Turbo version and is used for roasted poultry products, although Stefan adds, “They are more or less interchangeable when needed”.

Dalco’s third generation GEA CookStar is also a non-turbo model because they don’t need impingement for the vegetarian product. Stefan says, “We produce for third parties, and they come to us with ideas for new products. Together we look at how to produce them on an industrial scale. This is where the CookStar comes in. You think of a product, and we’ll cook it on the CookStar”. 

"You think of a product and we’ll cook it on the CookStar."— Stefan Van Den Hanenberg

The right performance

He’s tried just about everything, including Brie and French Fries. Meat has become a commodity product due to fierce competition from Eastern Europe, and Stefan says, “It’s important to use the whole animal. The growth opportunities are in added value products. I know this oven can deliver”. 

To prove this, Stefan demonstrated to one skeptical poultry product manufacturer that his Turbo CookStar out-performs a conventional rotary spit oven for drumsticks. When asked what the differences between the generations are, Stefan reports that his head of Technical Services says “They got it right first time”. However, on a detail level, Stefan adds, “The airflow has improved with each generation. Yield is better.  And the smoother, more rounded design makes cleaning easier too”.

25 years of innovation with GEA CookStar

With the introduction of the world’s first 2-zone spiral oven in 1992, GEA CookStar started to set new standards for industrial cooking. Evolving over time to the world’s only three-phase cooking concept in a double spiral oven, it is still a leader in terms of innovation, performance and reliability. Already for 25 years and counting…