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Expanding Your Horizontal Packaging Horizons

Expanding Your Horizontal Packaging Horizons

Series Feature 2015

Expanding Your Horizontal Packaging Horizons

Issue 1 : Protecting the Sick

By Craig Collett, Bosch Packaging Technology

In this five-column series, Bosch Packaging Technology shares its wealth of information to help manufacturers optimize their horizontal flow wrapper packaging lines. This first article provides insight into how pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers can ensure consumer safety through vision detection and bar coding equipment into their packaging lines.

We often don’t realize just how vulnerable we are until we’re sick. From a transient headache to a life-threatening asthma attack, consumers rely on pharmaceutical products and medical devices to help them recover or, more importantly, to stay alive. Pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers face particular challenges with product packaging. Because of the high level of product protection required, it’s vital to ensure that each item is securely packaged with the appropriate safeguards to ensure consumer safety. There are several technologies that can be incorporated on horizontal flow wrapping lines to ensure consumer safety, including validation equipment and hermetic sealing capabilities. These technologies will not only help protect consumers, but also your company from costly product recalls, lawsuits and a tarnished brand.

Vision inspection equipment can be placed in a few key locations along the packaging line, starting with product verification. A vision system can be used to verify that each in-feed flight contains the correct product. Because product and literature pairing are a critical component of pharmaceutical and medical device packaging, a vision camera can also scan the literature’s code matrix to verify that the appropriate content is accompanying the product. Manufacturers can also include a third vision camera to verify that the appropriate date/lot code is applied to the film that will wrap the product and match up all three codes for validation.

When installed, each of these vision systems can communicate with an integrated rejection mechanism that removes empty or incomplete packages, as well as packages with incorrect or missing literature, or wrong label codes. For example, Bosch supplies horizontal flow wrappers with integrated vision systems and reject stations that discard inferior products. Bosch brings the necessary experience and familiarity with third-party suppliers to provide a seamless integration of validation equipment and rejection conveyors into your horizontal form fill seal (HFFS) packaging line.

Additionally, packaging machinery with hermetic sealing technology can effectively protect oxygen and light sensitive products from degradation, as well as create tamper-evident packaging. Bosch provides a long dwell sealing system that guarantees a consistent sealing time regardless of machine speed, critical during the ramp up and down phases. This ensures an air-tight package, even for thicker opaque foils often used in medical packaging for light sensitive products.

Protecting both consumer and company, these validation methods and hermetic sealing technologies help ensure that a quality product travels from the facility to the people who depend on it.

Craig Collett
Product Line Manager
Tel: + 1 715 243 2405

The views in this article are those of the author