As part of the Applied Science Speaker Series, a presentation titled “Jack and the Chocolate Factory” or “Please Don’t Wake Me from this Dream Job!” was given by Jack Statz, a 2009 UW-Stout graduate, on Thursday afternoon in the university’s Jarvis Hall.
Statz was an applied science major with a minor in food systems and technology, who now works as a quality supervisor for Clasen Quality Coatings, Inc., in Middleton. Clasen makes coatings for familiar brands.
The company that was begun as a bakery in 1959 in Middleton by German brothers, evolved and now has several facilities. Clasen caters to various industries, can customize orders, and wholesales its confectionary coatings and fillers throughout the Midwest.
In addition to describing his job, Statz gave an overview of the company history, its machines and departments, including research and development, as well as the stages of processing — from mixing, refining and conching (liquid stage), to shaping, packaging and distribution.
Product lines were highlighted, too. And Nilla wafers dipped in white and dark chocolate and thick pretzel sticks covered with dark chocolate or peanut coating were up for sampling. Attendees also taste-tested chocolate drops to check their palate awareness and voted to guess which was the Geneva (with real cocoa), the coating and the MWRC (made with real chocolate). Remaining samples were given away and didn’t last long.