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Twin Screw Extruder vs Batch Mixer: Which Offers More Flexibility?

by:TENGDA     2023-06-16

Twin Screw Extruder vs Batch Mixer: Which Offers More Flexibility?

Batch mixers have been the standard in the food industry for decades, but with the emergence of the twin-screw extruder, its worth considering which machine offers more flexibility. In this article, well take a closer look at the two and dive into key features that set them apart.

What is a Batch Mixer?

A batch mixer is a machine used to combine ingredients in a single batch. It typically consists of a large, stainless-steel mixing bowl and a mixing arm that rotates to combine the ingredients. Batch mixers are popular in the food industry because theyre easy to clean, versatile, and affordable.

What is a Twin-Screw Extruder?

A twin-screw extruder is a machine used mainly in the chemical and pharmaceutical industries to compound, mix, and/or extrude materials. However, it can also be used to make food products such as breakfast cereals, snacks, and pasta. The extruder has two intermeshing screws that rotate to force the material through a barrel, mixing and/or cooking it in the process.


Batch mixers are great for mixing ingredients in a single batch, but their flexibility is limited. Once the batch is made, its challenging to change the recipe because the ingredients have already been mixed together. On the other hand, twin-screw extruders are much more flexible because they have the ability to mix, cook, and extrude materials continuously. This means that you can easily change the recipe and control the process in real-time.


Batch mixers are often used for small- to medium-sized batches, usually ranging from 5-200 kg. While this is fine for smaller operations, larger companies often require more significant capacity. Twin-screw extruders are designed for continuous operation and can handle much larger quantities of ingredients at once, typically ranging from 200-5,000 kg/hr.

Processing Time

Batch mixers require more processing time, as the mixing arm rotates slowly and must go through several mixing cycles to ensure that ingredients are evenly distributed. Twin-screw extruders, on the other hand, offer much faster processing times because the screws can rotate up to 600 RPMs, extruding the material in a single pass.

Product Quality

Batch mixers create uniform products that are free of lumps or inconsistencies, but their products are limited to simple blends or mixtures. Twin-screw extruders, on the other hand, have the ability to cook, mix, and extrude materials, creating complex products with various textures, shapes, and flavors.

Maintenance and Cleaning

Batch mixers are easier to clean and maintain because theyre simpler in design and have fewer moving parts. They can be cleaned between batches by removing the mixing arm and wiping the bowl with a damp cloth. Twin-screw extruders, on the other hand, are more complex in design with more moving parts. They require more maintenance and cleaning, often requiring disassembly to remove any stuck materials.

Which is Right for You?

Both batch mixers and twin-screw extruders have their advantages and disadvantages, and the best option depends on your specific needs and requirements. Batch mixers are great for small- to medium-sized operations, where flexibility and cost are the primary concerns. Twin-screw extruders are ideal for larger operations that require continuous processing, complex products, and high capacity.


While both batch mixers and twin-screw extruders have their advantages, its clear that twin-screw extruders offer more flexibility, higher capacity, and faster processing times. However, they require more maintenance and are more complex in design. In the end, the choice between the two machines depends on the specific needs of your operation, as well as your budget, and overall production goals.

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