Lately there has been some discussion on the Goodnature Juicing Facebook Group and other forums about using a separate food processor like a Sammic or Robot Coupe in addition to, or instead of the attached grinder on a Goodnature press.
We have studied this extensively at Goodnature, and for a while even sold a press that required a separate food processor. There are some important reasons why we don’t sell that machine anymore, and I thought I would make a post on the pros and cons of using a food processor. Here we go….
Pro #1: Increased Hourly Production (if using X-1 Mini or M-1)
When the grinder isn’t attached to the press, you can grind while the press is pressing. This means that as soon as the press is done, you can pour in the pulp for the next batch and get pressing again right away without waiting for the grinder between pressings. Ultimately this can lead to more batches per hour, which means more juice per hour. If you find that you are reaching capacity with your X-1 Mini, adding a separate food processor could be a good way to bridge the gap while you save money for a full size X-1.
In order for this to be true, you need to have your process set up in a way that you are actually saving time, and not just using two machines to do the same work as one machine. Many times, we saw that the user would still be grinding, then pressing, then grinding again, even with a separate food processor. This led to being less efficient, not more efficient.
If using a full size X-1, it’s much more efficient to use the attached EG-260 Grinder that comes with the press. We have seen many businesses make 100 bottles of juice per hour (and more) on the X-1 with EG-260, and that production rate is not possible if using a separate food processor since the capacity of the food processor is much less than that of the X-1.
Pro #2: Extra Control
With a separate food processor you have more control over the grind. You can grind extra fine or extra course, depending on the ingredients being juiced. This can lead to higher yield and improved processing for some ingredients.
Note that the full size X-1 does already have some control over the grind, by changing blades and grind speed so this doesn’t apply as much to the X-1 as it does to our smaller machines.
Con #1: Technique Sensitivity
As I mentioned in Pro #2 above, using a food processor gives you extra control because the longer you grind, the finer the produce is ground up. Having extra control means there is also more technique and knowledge involved to do it properly. This can become difficult or impossible to manage if you have employees doing the process.
If you (or your employee) over-grinds the recipe, it won’t press well and may spill up over the top of the press and make a mess. If you under-grind, the yield will suffer a lot, and you may get less than half the amount of juice as opposed to just using the attached grinder.
We received a substantial amount of complaints related to this when we were selling the press with a separate food processor, which is eventually what led to the decision to discontinue the product. In general, our customers are much happier and more successful in their businesses with an attached grinder that doesn’t take as much technique or expertise to use correctly. It was a very intentional decision to design our machines this way.
Con #2: Counter Space
When the grinder is attached to the top of the press, the counter space required is only as much as the width of the press. When you have a press sitting next to a food processor, the counter space becomes as much as double to triple the required space needed to make juice.
Con #3: Cleanup
If using the X-1 Mini or M-1 with a separate food processor, you have more parts to clean and need more space to wash and dry your equipment.
Con #4: More Machines to Maintain
Every time you add an extra piece of equipment to your business, you need to worry about maintaining the equipment, getting it serviced, and handling warranty claims when something goes wrong. Depending on which business you buy the equipment from, the experience could be good or very bad when there is an issue and the machine needs service. The less points of contact for your business when something goes wrong, the better.
For most juice businesses, using the already-attached grinder is the easiest process to manage, and ultimately will lead to an easier business to manage and grow. There are so many things to think about when starting a juice business, you should be looking for ways to simplify the process as much as possible, not make it more complicated.
If you do decide to use a separate food processor with an X-1 Mini or M-1, make sure you’re already familiar with the process of not using one, so you can make your own decisions about whether or not it’s worth the extra steps.
What do you think? Come over to our Goodnature Juicing Facebook Group to join the discussion!