I had the pleasure of  representing MomStart.com at a recent blogger event at Domino Pizza‘s company headquarters in Ann Arbor, MI.  As one of 8 bloggers from around the US, I was allowed an all-access pass  to visit a Domino’s Pizza Distribution Center to  check out their dough making process in person.  This was an eye opening trip and I’m happy to have gotten the chance and want to thank both  Mom Start and Domino’s Pizza for the opportunity.

I learned a lot about the pizza making business through our visit to the Michigan Domino’s Pizza Distribution Center.  It’s one of many scattered across the US and Canada which provide fresh dough and other ingredients to their local stores.  Each DC makes dough 1 to 6 days a week depending on the number of stores it supports. The Michigan DC supports 275 stores and makes dough 3 days a week.

Domino's Pizza Dough Making ProcessThe process starts in the mixing room where the dough is made from five simple ingredients:  flour, water, sugar, salt and oil.  Just like you make it at home.  Once the dough is mixed and cut to size it moves to the proofing room where it cools from 80 degrees to 40 degrees.  Once proofed, the dough moves to the shipping dock which is kept at 40 degrees as well and then the dough and other store products are loaded on to refrigerated semi-trucks and they make their rounds to the stores.  Dough is shipped within 24 hours and expires within 6 days of being made – it’s always fresh, never frozen, and doesn’t contain any dough extenders or preservatives.  I love that!

The mixing  room was spotless and I was happy to learn that they break down and clean the room at the end of every day and anytime the line is shut down for more than 2 hours. It takes about 4 hours to break down and scrub the room and when they start their next production day, they sanitize everything again before production begins.  I was amazed at how few people it took to make massive amounts of dough when most of it is mechanized – it’s a pretty impressive process. Check out the video for details on how the dough goes from a silo of flour to finished dough loaded onto refrigerated trucks for next day delivery in just a few hours.

Domino’s Pizza Dough Making Video

My overall impressions were that the center was clean, very noisy, and appeared to run well. I was impressed to find out the dough was made with fresh, natural ingredients and that no extenders were used. I feel much bettering eating Domino’s Pizza now that I know more about them.

I’ll share some more of the experience with you over the next week. I have to say that after seeing the operation I feel better about choosing Domino’s Pizza.