Milling is now a modern continuous process
From stone wheels to modern rollermills
The milling process has evolved from the days of grinding the wheat between two large stone wheels (although this process does still occur at the request of a few customers), to the modern rollermill.
The modern rollermill consists of two cast iron rollers set slightly apart from each other. The top roller runs at a slightly faster rate to the lower roller; when wheat passes through it creates a shearing action, opening up the wheat grain.
The various fragments of wheat grain are separated by being passed through a complex arrangement of sieves. White endosperm particles known as semolina will be channelled into a series of smooth reduction rolls for final milling into white flour.
Modern mills are operating without interruption
Milling is a continuous process and flour mills are operating 24 hours a day, seven days per week with infrequent maintenance shutdowns. Therefore flour millers must secure agricultural raw materials' supply (whether wheat, rye or oats) in the required quality and quantity.
Whether for wheat or flour, product blending is a vital part of the milling process that enables millers to deliver consistent quality products to their customers.
Millers may blend different wheats (protein levels and other quality characteristics) prior to milling in order to achieve a specific grist. However, they may also blend different flours in order to produce the product demanded by their customers. By blending together the many different flour streams produced by the mill, a miller can create further variations in features such as flour colour.