GEA, a major technology provider to the food processing industry, has unveiled new SmartPacker CX400 packaging machine with induction sealing capabilities for meat and poultry manufacturers.
Available in sanitary and standard configurations, the SmartPacker CX400 packaging machine is installed with induction sealing capabilities to reduce changeover times and increase uptime.
The SmartPacker can also be used for the production of major bag types with reduced air and zero perforation, enabling the manufacturer to produce easy secondary packaging, save shipping costs and provide a product with enhanced tamper evidence at full production line speeds.
GEA said the upgrades were developed based on direct customer feedback from producers of fresh and frozen meat and poultry products.
The first upgrade is a new induction temperature controlled sealing system (ITC), which is used to close polyethylene (PE) bags and a range of laminate films common in the meat and poultry sector.
It has been designed to provide all the benefits of standard permanent temperature controlled (PTC) sealing with enhanced uptime capabilities and reliability.
The induction technology will be used by the new ITC system to heat the bags ahead of sealing with a single electrical connection, helping to decrease the risk of unplanned downtime and reduce maintenance requirements.
In standard applications, the polytetrafluorethylene (PTFE) layer of a sealing mechanism has to be changed before each production run commences.
GEA’s ITC system uses a quick-release and plug-and-play mechanism, which allows completing that changeover within two minutes.
GEA vertical packaging product manager Martijn van de Mortel said: “The SmartPacker, fitted with a conventional PTC sealing mechanism, currently operates at 98% uptime, with the remaining 2% attributed to both maintenance and changeovers.”
The second innovation launched is a shape absorbing air reduction system, which enables to produce bags without any form of perforation.
The new air-expeller absorbs the shape of the product through inflatable silicon bellows directly before the bag is sealed. All residual air will be expelled to maintain correct amount of air to divide the products.
Mortel further said: “The system has been designed with both our customers and end-users in mind. In the first instance, consumers, and therefore processors, are demanding packaging that shows zero evidence of tampering, such as a small hole in the bag, for example.”