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Nestlé's Traitler on equipment requirements

“We need increased flexibility from packaging equipment, yet if we sacrifice speed in achieving flexibility, we can’t achieve true cost optimization.”

This was among the observations provided recently by Helmut Traitler, vice president packaging at Nestlé, in a phone interview on the subject of trends in the food and beverage packaging sector.

“There will be more customization than ever before, and it will be aimed at meeting specific groups or demographic needs,” Traitler said. “What we need is packaging equipment that will let us square the circle, that is to say, maximize speed and maximize flexibility. This will require smart engineering. Machinery builders may have to do a little soul searching to provide that kind of easy-to-changeover yet high-speed equipment.”

Traitler insists that this squaring of the circle can be done, and he provides an example from within Nestlé.

“We are in the process of rolling out stand-up pouches for some pet care products across Europe. We started with low machine efficiencies because there are so many formats requiring changeover. But after a tremendous effort that included both the packaging equipment manufacturer and our own engineers, we have doubled the machine output. This is a trend we’ll see more of, this collaboration between packaging machinery builders and their customers.”

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