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Packaging’s main event

Be warned, it's even bigger and better this year. Running from 21-27 April, a huge range of packs, materials and machinery will be on view at the Düsseldorf Trade Fair Centre's 18 halls covering 162,000m² and featuring 2300 exhibitors from 58 countries. Here you will find just a taste of the vast number of products and services on show and, if this wets your appetite, see our special reader offer to visit the show on page 4 of this issue

Accurate vial filling

Bosch will show its AFG 3000 series of powder filling machines for filling vials in the mid-yield range of processing. The AFG 3010 and 3020 are capable of filling at speeds up to 160 and 320 injection vials/min respectively.

At the heart of the AFG series is the central dosing unit which is vacuum/compressed air operated and the servo-driven machines are said to process even heavy flowing powders “fast and reliably”.

The AFG reaches dosing accuracies of up to 1.5%, a factor of around two above the accuracy of other dosing systems, such as auger fillers, says Bosch.

Bosch Group T: 01895 834 466

Upgraded inspection equipment

Loma Systems is taking its biggest ever stand at interpack to promote its portfolio of end-of-line inspection equipment, including IQ2 metal detectors, AS checkweighers and its range of x-ray systems.

The company says a “significant upgrade” will be unveiled to its X3 X-ray system, further enhancing the controls with a touch screen interface and a “superior operating platform”.

Commands can be displayed in multiple languages and the Windows XP software enables operators to change settings at the touch of a button. The new X3 can also be fully networked with other production line equipment to allow access to real-time information and up-to-the minute status reports.

Launched in 2004, Loma Scientific’s Celsius temperature measurement system will also be a focal point of the stand. Celsius is said to be a new concept in the temperature testing of chilled and frozen foods and uses non-invasive technology to measure the average equilibrium temperature of products, eliminating the need to throw away product after testing.

Marks & Spencer has apparently carried out trials and is keen for its suppliers to adopt the technology.

Loma Systems T: 01252 893300

New EvoCan range set to make debut

Weidenhammer will unveil its latest EvoCan product range, all of which, it says, are easy to open, have lower material input, feature an “aesthetically appealing” opening due to a double fold on the outer edge and have “substantially improved” secondary seals.

New concepts include a transparent lid so consumers can see the can contents and an EvoCan without a membrane, but with a tear-off band on the lid for security, which reduces costs

Another prototype on display is a two-part display pack that slides apart to reveal the contents, acting as a decorative tabletop ‘dispenser’.

Weidenhammer Packungen T: +49 (0) 6205/203-0

Operational line will showcase metal detection

Lock will be showcasing its MET 30+ range of metal detectors. The fully-operational line on the stand will demonstrate the MET 30+ hf and MET 30+ 3f metal detectors as well as Lock’s proprietary ADC software and touchscreen interface.

In addition, the company is highlighting the ATEX-approved Compact Vertical Fall detector.

The MET 30+ hf, which is said to offer up to 30% higher sensitivity than standard detectors, employs a single high frequency, crystal controlled oscillator and is designed primarily for the snack food and bakery industries.

Visitors can also view Lock’s MET 30+ 3f in operation. This is said to be the world’s first fully automatic triple frequency detector, capable of “highly accurate” inspection of both poly-film and metallised packaged products.

Lock Inspection Systems T: 0161 624 0333

Safe bulk bag discharging

Exhibiting company Flexicon (Europe) says the difficulties in delivering efficiency on the one hand and worker safety on the other during the procedure of bulk bag discharging have been successfully addressed since the recent launch of its new generation bulk bag discharger.

The discharger eliminates dust during untying, discharging, retying, collapse and removal of bulk bags while achieving “complete discharge with greater efficiency”.

Central to the new design is said to be a bulk bag/hopper interface consisting of a manual Spout-Lock clamp ring positioned above a pneumatically actuated Tele-Tube telescoping tube. Together, the devices enable an operator to make a quick, dust-tight connection between the bag spout and hopper and to automatically elongate the bag as it empties to promote flow and evacuation.

The company will also be featuring its Swing Down bulk bag filler and automated, multipoint, hopper loader system based on its range of flexible spiral conveyors.

Flexicon (Europe) Ltd T: 01227 374710

Food cup ensures freshness

Stora Enso will demonstrate its latest airtight cup for food packaging where lid tightness is ensured through a “combination of specially developed paperboard, heat-sealed raw-edge taping and innovative lid sealing”. The seal is then tested on its tightness-testing equipment based on tracer gas.

A non-foil paperboard, Cupforma AT, was developed for the cup and its water-vapour barrier is said to prevent the food content from caking and protects against loss of crispiness, mould growth and softening of texture.

The oxygen barrier protects the food against rancidity, loss of vitamins, growth of microbes and oxidation of lipids and its colour, taste and odour remain unchanged during a long shelf life.

The company will also launch what it terms is a “a revolutionary service concept”, a web-based customer interface, to accompany its digital printing and packaging solutions. Through the interface, customers will be able to design and order their own, individual packages via the Internet.

The service is compatible with the company’s Xeikon-powered DBS disc packaging line and the digital printing and production of paperboard cups.

Stora Enso T: +358 2046 121

Can filler and sealer

FMC FoodTech wil be exhibiting what it says is the first machine to integrate can filling and seaming in one operation.

The TwinTec filling/closing technology is said to offer a “revolutionary hygienic design and machine cleanability”. All product contact surfaces are stainless steel or non-corrosive material with rounded corners and there is one single large drainage channel.

Grouped utility connections and centralised can infeed and discharge allow for a quick, easy “plug and play” installation. FMC says the unit also “sets new standards in can height and can diameter change-over time, can format flexibility, machine reliability and uptime, space requirements and operator safety and comfort”.

The SeamTec range of can closers is available from 3-10 spindles and covers the speed range from 50-1250 cans/min.

FMC FoodTech T: +32 3 780 1370

Near zero product ‘giveaway’

Ishida Europe is launching its ‘next generation’ multihead weigher at interpack. The R-Series range operates at up to 200 weighs/min on a 14 head single discharge machine and is said to have improved accuracy due to the development of a new algorithm which can apparently perform combination calculations five times faster than previously possible, thus [according to Ishida] “cutting product giveaway to near zero”.

The weigher is said to incorporate several easy clean features and is quieter and more energy efficient than previous models. A new feeder drive system and self-tuning feeders also further enhance the smooth handling of difficult products.

Also on the stand will be the recently launched retail ready line, a complete packaging line for fresh foods, and the fresh food weigher that enables sticky fresh foods to be weighed automatically using combination weighing.

Ishida Europe T:0121 6077700

Demonstration of auger-based fillers

All-Fill International will be demonstrating a range of its vertical auger-based filling equipment, including the Series 100 single head in-line automatic filling system, shown on this occasion in volumetric form. It is said to be able to handle a wide range of shapes and sizes of containers from small glass vials to large plastic pails, all with tool-free changeover.

It has lift at the point of fill for bottom-up or neck-entry dust-free filling of powder products and pastes, vibration for settling of granular products and large format full colour touch screen control with memory recall of all fill variables.

Four Series 10 semi-automatic filler configurations will also be on display. The servo weigh filler is said to offer “optimum speed, torque, precision and flexibility”, with volumetric filling, single speed gravimetric filling, two-speed bulk and dribble filling, and multi-stage multi-speed bulk and predict forward programmes as standard.

The Series 1 servo micro-filler, with integrated Mettler balance, will complete the line-up, demonstrating multi-stage micro-dosing to within 1 or 2mg.

All-Fill International T:(0)1767 691100

Bagmakers and cartoner from Kliklok-Woodman

Snackfood, bakery, confectionery, and frozen food packaging machinery specialist, Kliklok-Woodman, will highlight two updated bagmakers and a new high-speed end-load cartoner.

The Polaris II bagmaker now features full servo motor control, an Insight colour touch screen for easy operator set up and use, automatic machine timing “for optimal performance” and a Yaskawa off-the-shelf PLC control system.

The second bagmaker, the Compak II, provides the same compact footprint as the original, but the updated version offers an increased bag size range as well as off-the-shelf PLC control, Insight colour touch screen, automatic machine timing and advanced snack food features.

Full application of servos and Insight are said to have dramatically reduced changeover times on the new cartoner, the Servo HSR. It will be integrated with Smooth IPTU, a smooth belt product transfer unit running at up to 250 cartons/min.

Kliklok-Woodman T: 01275 836131

First for blister testing

Sepha will show what it says is the first in-line leak tester which simultaneously detects pinholes/gross holes, weak seals and capillaries in pharmaceutical blister packs.

The unit inspects 300 sealed blisters/min per lane, giving pass/fail results for each blister in real-time. Patents are pending for this automatic system which is the first to achieve 100% testing of thermoformed or cold-formed blisters for all three package defects.

Real-time results ensure that any compromises in package seal integrity can be investigated immediately, preventing production of further rejects and saving on re-run time.

The most novel feature of the system is said to be its ability to inspect finished cold-form blisters. Identifying defects in cold-formed alu/alu blisters poses difficulties for in-line testing as aluminium is completely opaque. Sepha says previous in-line systems could go as far as identifying pinholes in formed aluminium using optical systems, but could not check quality after the sealing process.


Easy clean and precise filler

OCME will show a range of its latest products, including a Libra R5 monobloc weigh filler with 24 heads and a rinser and capper capable of filling 250ml, one and two litre square and round plastic bottles at speeds up to 13,200 bottles/hr.

The R5 range is characterised by the easy cleaning of the parts in contact with product, while the “extreme precision” of the electronics and the simple size change operations offer further benefits to the user.

The company will also have a demonstration circuit in which two laser guided Auriga shuttle cars will be handling full and empty pallets. The vehicles’ maximum transport capacity is 1200kg and the range has models with forks, rollers and gripping arms to transport from 1-4 pallets at the same time. Initially proposed for low speed installations, the shuttles are now available for high speed lines such as in the beverage sector.

Ocme T: +39-0521-275111