IMPROVED EFFICIENCIES. The individually pouched cookies are packed in 6-counts per carton.
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VF/F/S bagger for single-serve snacks

Saves time, labor, and packaging material costs.
BAGGER, CARTONER. Pouches of fruit snacks move through a combination scale.
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Vertical cartoners cope with 24,000 lb of pouched candy per hour

A custom control system and a clever arrangement of sensors developed by Ferrara engineering control help Ferrara’s five cartoners keep up with pouched candy.
GANTRY PACKER. Among the new pieces of equipment in Line 1 is the top-loading gantry case packer.
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Optimized lines at Bacardi Beaucaire

At a historic facility in the south of France, Bacardi engineers have found a way to increase speed, efficiency, and flexibility by taking six lines down to two.
 MULTIPLE ROBOTS. Photo shows how robots one, two, and three automatically move lidded plates to the retort crates.
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Automation at Nestle brings back baby food line

A range of shelf-stable, microwavable, ready meals for babies and toddlers showed promise a few years ago. But packaging operations had to be optimized to make it viable.
Four of the injection molded PP cups  with foil lidding are robotically loaded into a PET tray that  then passes through a flow wrapper to produce this  attractive retail pack.
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Danone launches an unfrozen fro yo

Who wouldn’t want to get in on the frozen yogurt craze? But if you’re one of the world’s most famous marketers of fresh product, maybe you do it by way of the refrigerated case.
A high-speed delta robot uses a vacuum end-of-arm tool to pick up individual diagnostic test kits and feed them to a flow wrapper.
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Packaging is part of robotics’ banner year

The North American robotics industry achieved record growth of 17% in 2012, and as these firsthand accounts prove, packaging applications played a part in that phenomenal expansion.
Toad-Ally Snax specializes in the production of chocolate-coated pretzels and chocolate-drizzled caramel popcorn.
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Pretzel maker navigates new twists in packaging

Toad-Ally Snax installs pouch vf/f/s and case coder upgrades to accommodate growing product demand.
A closeup of the robotic end effector and its vacuum pickup cups.
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Cartoning made simple

What used to take six operators now requires just one as Schiff Nutrition automates its cartoning operation. At 400 nutrition bars/min, the speed is pretty impressive, too.
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Automation hastens case-packing speeds and pack-pattern changeovers

Giant Snacks seeds growth in productivity with robotic pick-and-place packing equipment.
Secondary and tertiary packaging are shown
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Danone thermoforms PET for a niche line of products

Danone sought an alternative to an EBM bowl made of clarified PP, but it didn’t want to lose the bowl’s unusual shape or its clarity. The answer: PET and ‘open-mold’ tooling.
Empty tubes are picked from boxes by the robot’s twin-row end effector and placed in the filler’s pucks.
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Norway's Ello turns to robots for an automation solution

Filling, insertion into trays, secondary packaging, and palletizing of tubes is done at 155 tubes/min by a tightly integrated series of robotic systems that require only one operator.
Shown here are just two of the many cartoning formats that the robotic end-of-line system is capable of executing.
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Coffee capsules cartoned fast and flexibly

Because the world’s supermarkets want their single-serve coffee capsules packaged in such a wide variety of formats, this Italian coffee marketer opted for maximum versatility.
Thermal transfer overprinting delivers high-speed, high-quality coding to the foil coffee pouches.
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Evolution of coffee pouch and case coding

Latest-generation thermal transfer printers and case corner label printers/applicators enhance product identification efficiencies.
This 48-count multipack is one of many finished formats that Bonomi is able to make on its fast, flexible line.
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Servos serve up speed and flexibility

Baker of ladyfingers relies on servos, vertical accumulation buffer, and multipacker redundancy to run 180 12-count primary packs/min into a variety of secondary packs.
Cartoned products are secured in three-packs, using paper bands.
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Banded bundles replace shrink film wraps

Banding equipment slashes energy and packaging material costs, while also reducing both floor-space and environmental footprints.
STICK PACKS. Duda Farms markets celery sticks in 1.6-oz, 3-oz, and 8-oz bags.
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Celery packer installs flow-wrap machines with extended infeed conveyor system

Duda Farms doubles throughput, improves bag seal consistency, and cuts labor costs and film waste.
BL20 I/O. The BL20 I/O stations installed within the subassembly give users control and diagnostics on the Pro Pack machine.
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Case packer is 'sophisticated' yet rugged

Case packer is ‘sophisticated’ yet rugged Machine uses best-in-class controls technology to achieve throughput of 35 cases/min. IP67 rating ensures reliability despite rugged wash downs.
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Soup maker 'soups up' printing/coding efficiencies

Kettle Cuisine standardizes on one coding supplier for foodservice pouches, retail cup labels, and corrugated shipping cases.
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Automation shines at Heinz

Smart Ones frozen meals are whisked through a highly automated packaging line at Heinz’s Pocatello, ID, facility. Cartoning and vision inspection stand out.
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A case for easy printing

A cereal co-packer replaces its sophisticated case coder with a simple system that’s high on reliability and low on cost.
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Bagger doubles speeds, reduces product giveaway

In the wake of Katrina, shrimp processor/packer rebounds, rebuilds, and re-invigorates efficiencies by installing an automated scale/bagging system.
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Berry packer revamps bagging and casing lines

Renovation of blueberry packaging operations includes installation of vf/f/s machine for retail bags, bag-in-box equipment for bulk packs, plus several new auxiliary systems.
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Keeping the machine footprint small

This California packager of Mediterranean-style food products distributed to wholesalers found a single source for five discrete pieces of packaging equipment.
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Soft product, solid results

Doumak’s two latest vf/f/s machines bag its marshmallows at a steady rate of 40/min done 24/7.
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ConAgra Foods tackles the challenge of Wal-Mart's RFID mandate

From pilot plant testing to determine tag selection and placement to rollout of a Phase 2 scalable line, ConAgra meets the mandate head on.
HAND LOADING. Meat portions are loaded by hand shortly after the forming web leaves the thermoforming station.
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Optimizing efficiency in meat packaging

Thermoformable and heat shrinkable, this newly developed film brings labor and material cost savings to a Dutch meat marketer that uses it in place of preformed shrink bags.
FULFILLING EXPECTATIONS. Herbal Works, Inc. now automatically fills liquid and semi-liquid products into a wide array of contain
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Tale of two companies' trade show triumphs

Herbal Works and Alessi Bakery discover highly valuable packaging solutions at Pack Expo.
HANDY INTERFACE. Changeovers of the ink-jet coders are as easy as pushing a button on the keypad interface. Celestial also repor
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Coders fit Celestial's needs to a T

The efficiency and flexibility of seven case coders and one laser coder help tea marketer Celestial Seasonings stay out of production hot water.
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Laser coder

In early 2004, the plant installed a Markem Smart Lase™ 110 laser coder for its “specialty” line comprising cartoned packs containing a variety of bagged teas.
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Candy company sweetens packaging efficiencies

Farley’s and Sathers adds versatile vertical cartoning line to keep pace with growing product demand.
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Non-smudge bakery bag closures

Australia-based food manufacturer George Weston Foods (GWF) uses plastic tag closures from Kwik Lok to close its plastic film bread bags, but was experiencing some problems with ink smudging of date codes, price, and other product identification codes on the tags.
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Big Sky brews ink-jet upgrade

To better track product freshness and quality throughout distribution and eventual sale at retail outlets, Big Sky Brewery of Missoula, MT, recently began date-coding individual bottles of its unique beers, including Moose Drool, Scape Goat, and Powder Hound ales.
Slugs of Ginger Nuts in clear, cold-seal film move from rotary wheel transfer.
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Ginger Nuts go for an upgrade

Higher throughput with reduced labor costs is among the paybacks gained by United Biscuits since the firm automated its Ginger Nuts biscuit line in Carlisle, England.See video
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Euro paperboard launches Island Kiss

For its limited-edition summer fragrance, Escada Group of Brussels worked with its converter to select MeadWestvaco’s Crescendo paperboard.
Shown at left is P&G's Gross Gerau tube filler during a break. A robot inserts tubes 20 at a time into pockets in the portion of
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Technology opens a door at P&G

By hitching its wagon to that increasingly bright star called servo technology, P&G gains flexibility, increased capacity, and better utilization of equipment assets.
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'Project blank' (sidebar)

GlaxoSmithKline teamed up recently with corrugated vendor Smurfit-Stone and coding machinery maker Markem to generate significant cost savings and simplified inventory at GSK’s Maidenhead, England, facility.
From the tf/f/s system at the head of the line (above) to the robotic palletizer at the end, both of the twin lines at Schering-
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'The way packaging should be done'

Twin blister-pack lines populated by ‘best-in-class’ machines played a key role as Schering-Plough took its Claritin-brand product from prescription-only to OTC status. See video
Each palletizing robot receives cases from two 
overhead infeeds and loads two separate pallets.
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Robots boost pasta packing

Four robotic palletizing cells accept a wide variety of cases from eight upstream packaging lines. Changeover of pallet patterns is done at a touchscreen.See video
Line technician Omar Micheo loads a fresh roll of foil-based film to one of the six f/f/s machines that wrap Nephron's vials.
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Wrapping of vials catches on at Nephron

Concerns over mis-dosing and product integrity have led a Florida drug maker from bulk-packed vials to individually wrapped vials for certain customers.
As taped shipping cases are conveyed through an opening in a wall, a coder prints the side of the box.
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Foodservice firm makes its case

Mark-Lynn Foods employs 29 case coders at its Bremen, GA, facility. The networked machines improve reliability and lessen labor costs.
With this many multipack and carton formats having to run on one line, versatility was as important a component in the overall o
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Swiss chocolates meet high-speed automation

New materials and new equipment are helping this Swiss chocolate manufacturer send a better product to market while keeping labor costs in check.
A new vf/f/s machine helps Janes Family Foods double production at its North York, Ontario, Canada, plant. It's used for fills f
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Vf/f/s, scales speed Janes' progress

New vf/f/s equipment and scale double production, eliminating overtime costs. Machinery also accommodates larger fills and reduces product giveaway at Janes Family Foods.See in-plant video
Near the end of the line, hot melt ink-jet coding marks each case with lot and date code information.
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New equipment fuels winery's growth

This Napa winery knows that only by investing in new packaging machinery can it become the outsourcing solutions leader in the global wine industry.See in-plant video
The 24-valve filler (above) is enclosed in a chamber where overpressured sterile air keeps contamination out.
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Montaqua makes its move

This Montana water plant is poised to make a splash. A new line for PET bottles paves the way for much broader distribution.
New packaging materials at Clougherty Packing include barrier plastic trays and barrier lidding material heat sealed to tray fla
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MAP protects fresh pork

Barrier materials, MAP technology, and automation upgrades all combine to help Clougherty Packing extend shelf life and improve quality of ground pork and sausage.See in-plant video
Gorgeous graphics are preprinted, but variable information is printed on-line by a thermal-transfer printer.
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Kauai brings coffee packing in-house

An auger filler mounted over a vf/f/s machine equipped with a thermal-transfer printer was all it took at Kauai Coffee Co. to bring coffee packaging in-house.
Sara Lee's mini-donut packing system uses an unusual continuous-motion rotary drum loader (seen at left and up close at far left
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Prototype wrapper's feeder suits Sara Lee

An automated mini-donut sorting and wrapping system improves efficiency at Sara Lee’s Paris, TX, bakery.
Electronic net-weigh fillers are long on sanitation and accuracy.
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Special equipment for a special concept

Custom blow molding, electronic net-weigh filling in a HEPA-filtered enclosure, robotic palletizing—it all helps Superior Dairy succeed with caseless shipping. See in-plant video
Each of eight new vertical form/fill/seal machines like the one shown here can fill any of Golden Flake's potato chip varieties,
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Addition by subtraction

Golden Flake doubles speeds and reduces labor costs for potato chip packaging by replacing 21 outdated lines with eight new vf/f/s machines. See in-plant video
Diamond's new vf/f/s machines produce a variety of bag sizes. One machine applies an LDPE zipper in the transverse direction, sh
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Equipment sparkles at Diamond of California

New vf/f/s machines and computerized scales increase speeds, reduce downtime, and lessen giveaway of Diamond of California shelled nuts. See in-plant video
A key improvement to downstream packaging functions is this automatic case erector.
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Equipment sparkles at Diamond of California (sidebar)

Downstream, upstream efficiency
A production time and date code is printed beneath the "3905-6" product code. The code appears in the side gusset area of lawn-a
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Coder grows on lawn-and-garden bagmaker

Exopack’s Tomah, WI, plant adds a thermal-transfer coder to print production dates of lawn-and-garden bags sold to customers such as The Scotts Company.
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Laser coding excels at Excelda

Excelda Mfg., a contract packager of lubricants and other products sold in the automotive aftermarket, has turned to laser coding to improve legibility of the single-line date code it uses on the plastic bottles it fills.
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Clearly apart from the competition

Knowing it wasn’t the first to launch single-serve milks and juices in plastic bottles, this dairy made sure its new PET bottle would stand out and promote the brand.
Blue Diamond Growers' line operator Sharon Anderson (above) uses a mouse and keypad to load a message into one of five networked
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Blue Diamond networks coders

Networking multiple coders to a host PC saves time and provides flexibility for nut cooperative Blue Diamond Growers.
A Blue Diamond technician makes a keypad adjustment to a new case coder (above). Each coder codes up to three lines of type on a
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Case coders sparkle at Blue Diamond

New equipment delivers three lines of type for bulk boxes of nuts. The case coders reduce labor costs, downtime, and ink loss associated with previous units.
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Quality product, quality coding

“It’s too easy to spend time and money on the best ingredients, careful production, and attractive packaging only to destroy the quality feel by poor printing of the ‘use-by’ date and batch number on the pack.” Sales director David Marx of Giles Foods knows whereof he speaks. His firm, based in Milton Keynes, England, supplies a range of quiches and specialty breads to major food retailers in the United Kingdom.
One of Calhoun's new vf/f/s lines automates packaging from roll stock to manual case packing. Some examples of Calhoun Bend Mill
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Climbing the ladder of f/f/s technology

Beginning a decade ago, Calhoun Bend Mill started with simple packaging equipment, went through a rebuild upgrade and now has two new vf/f/s machines for bags of its food mixes.
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Fresh pasta maker romances long shelf life (sidebar)

Serving sauce for Sargento
At the first labeling station, a strip stamp label is applied over the top of the bottle (top). Small labels are used to show of
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Quintuplets!

New automated labeling system delivers five labels onto each glass bottle of Labrot & Graham’s premium bourbon whiskey, boosting output, reducing labor costs and improving placement accuracy.
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Filler meets tough standards at Stonyfield (sidebar)

Cartoner delivers downstream