Now is the Time for Packaging Innovation

A challenging economy is the best time for packaging innovation. With signs pointing to recovery in 2010, brands can position themselves for success by investing in innovation now.

At PACK EXPO 2009 (Oct. 5-7, Las Vegas Convention Center), meat and poultry manufacturers will discover the innovation they need to build stronger brands, enhance production efficiencies, meet sustainability requirements and reduce total systems costs. In a single trip, attendees can examine the latest packaging technologies from more than 1,000 exhibitors, making the show a cost-effective, convenient solution to find the innovation they need.

With so many resources under one roof, discovering innovation is easy. Here’s a preview of some of the many technologies meat and poultry manufacturers can’t afford to miss at PACK EXPO. Be sure to register for the show at to see them for yourself.

Optical Scanning Technology Ensures Absolute Accuracy

The new Batchmaster III controls package from Batching Systems Inc. (Booth # C-805) has much higher processing power allowing for higher resolution products scan resulting in high definition product recognition for superior count accuracy.

The 2-gate processor design allows the feeder bowl to run continuously as one batch discharges the next batch begins to accumulate resulting in higher output speeds. The new PPU is designed for tool-free assembly and disassembly, allowing for easy cleaning and maintenance and the transparent front panel allows for visual process inspection. The PPU also has a short body to minimize product drop, and the gates are controlled by quiet smart motors eliminating the need for pneumatics and movement detection sensors.

Batchmaster® III Counters feature Verified Movement and Speeds (VMAS) technology to ensure consistent, efficient operation.

Modular Gravity Packer Eliminates Human Error

Automatic changeover and product shifting allows BluePrint Automation’s (Booth # C-221) Rotary Gate Packer II to pack bags of fresh or frozen vegetables, IQF chicken and a wide variety of other flexible packages directly into secondary containers at extremely high speeds with no manual adjustments.

The system is small and compact and features a simple design that contains very few mechanical, electrical, or pneumatic components. Product shifting can be provided to achieve a number of pack patterns.

User-Friendly Flow Wrapper with Sanitary Design

The Pioneer Horizontal Flow Wrapper from Campbell Wrapper Corporation (Booth # C-1219) features a sanitary modular design with cantilevered components. Cutting head, film and infeed servo motors with timing belt drives provide reliable, maintenance free operation. Allen-Bradley ControlLogix 5000 Series PLC control provides exceptional control of machine functions.

User-friendly touchscreen operator interface includes product information, alarms, warning messages and production data. Machine can be quickly and easily adjusted for product and/or wrapping material changeover, often without the use of tools. Up to 40 product records can be stored for retrieval through the PanelView Plus 700 touchscreen operator interface. Wrapper is designed to operate at speeds up to 250 ppm.

New Print & Apply System Utilizes Label Liner to Reduce Waste

The TwinPrint label printer applicator from FOX IV Technologies, Inc. (Booth # C-645) can print on both sides of the pressure sensitive label construction – the top label surface and the label liner, reducing label waste material by as much as percent. This label design lends itself to dual-purpose labels for applications such as combining shipping labels and packing slips, shipping labels with lot traceability information or covert brand protection identifiers and product identification labels with return forms or special offers. The information on the printed liner remains confidential and provides tamper-evident protection.

Thermal Transfer Overprinter Increases Profitability

The COM II from ID Technology (Booth # C-411) is a versatile thermal transfer overprinting solution designed for seamless integration into a wide range of flexible packaging machines including vertical and horizontal form/fill/sealers. Simple technology provides consistency with low maintenance requirements, increasing profitability and equipment effectiveness.

The COM II 300dpi print head produces sharp, high-quality text, bar codes, logos and Data Matrix codes. Built-in intelligence eliminates the need for an attached controller. The COM II has easy, onboard label creation software and multiple message storage, enabling quick and simple message changeover. For further cost savings, the patented variable Ribbon Economy function reduces the amount of ribbon used per print without compromising on print resolution.

Easy to Operate Thermal Ink Jet Printer

The compact MicroJet HRP printing system from Loveshaw (Booth # C-1419) is designed for one and two line marking/coding applications where ease of operation and quality of print is crucial.

The HP cartridge-based printer is constructed of a sealed, industrial-grade housing with stainless steel faceplate and built-in photo sensors to detect product speed and direction. Changing ink is simple: users simply lift the cover of the printhead to find a disposable Loveshaw ink cartridge that is simple to snap-in and snap-out. The system prints characters up to .45" tall and reaches print speeds up to 200 feet/minute.

Robot Enables High-Speed Food Handling, Picking, Packing

Motoman’s (Booth # C-3643) new five-axis MPK2 robot with dynamic, next-generation DXM100 controller provides superior performance in food handling, picking, packing and other high-speed material handling applications, particularly in environments where cleanliness is important.

Fast, flexible and compact, the controller is also ready for food applications with National Sanitation Foundation (NSF-H1) certified grease, the MPK2 robot features an IP-67 rating that permits washdown, even with certain caustic chemicals.

Multi-Lane, Multi-Row Printer Maximizes Throughput, Flexibility

Featuring up to 14 thermal transfer print heads integrated on one common platform, the new ThermalPak Traversing System from Norwood Marking Systems / Allen Coding Systems (Booth # C-1211) maximizes speed and flexibility. The system prints multiple lanes simultaneously and quickly traverses to print multiple rows before starting the next machine cycle. The ThermalPak Traversing System is ideal for use on a wide variety of horizontal-form-fill-seal (HFFS) and IV bag forming machines that produce multiple lanes and multiple rows of packages per cycle.

High Speed, Efficient Band Sealer

The Supersealer SB3 Bandsealer from OK International Group (Booth # C-451) continuously seals a wide range of bag materials at high speed and efficiency. Heavy duty stainless steel construction in combination with proven band sealing technology and operator friendly controls ensures continuous duty performance in demanding applications.

The system’s easy lift front cover provides on-top access to all components, translating to faster maintenance. The Supersealer has quick releases on the band tension for easy band changeover.