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Articles from 2016 In November


Smart Labels in Healthcare: Improve Logistics, Strengthen Security, and Communicate with Consumers

Download this white paper to learn about current and future developments in smart-label technology for pharmaceutical and medical packaging.

Smart labels for pharmaceuticals and medical products are already streamlining the cold chain, making track-and-trace possible, providing real-time shipping data, and enabling some brand-to-consumer communication. The future of smart packaging, however, goes beyond the label to include such innovations as smart pill bottles that record dosages taken and communicate seamlessly with the consumers’ smartphones. Smart packaging has the potential to engage directly and deeply with consumers and healthcare providers via NFC and advanced RFID technologies, ultimately increasing consumer compliance with therapy regimens and improving healthcare outcomes overall.

Read more on:

  • The various types of smart labels available to the healthcare industry and the advantages they provide
  • Chemical and electronic technologies used in smart labels for healthcare
  • Exciting future developments in smart-package technology that will give pharmaceutical and medical brands unprecedented access to consumer behavior and interests
  • Smart technology’s role in bettering healthcare outcomes for all

Bolstering carton security

Bolstering carton security
Jones Packaging Inc. can integrate NFC OpenSense tags into pharmaceutical cartons

Jones Packaging Inc. has become the first folding carton converter to receive a “Preferred Converter” certification for applying NFC OpenSense tags from Thin Film Electronics ASA to paperboard packaging for over-the-counter and prescription medication, Jones reports.

The tags are thin, flexible labels employing near-field-communication technology for detecting both a product’s “factory sealed” and “opened” states. They contain unique identifiers that can be used for authentication and tracking. “Primarily, the tags are used for brand protection, tamper evidence, marketing, education, and data collection,” James Lee, Director, Technology & Innovation, Jones Packaging Inc., tells PMP News. The tags can wirelessly communicate these product states with the tap of an NFC-enabled smartphone. They remain active even after a product’s factory seal has been broken, allowing further communication with consumers and patients.

Jones has been working with Thinfilm since January 2016. “Since we announced our partnership, our teams have been working together to automate the application of Thinfilm’s NFC OpenSense tags to paperboard pharmaceutical packaging on a high-speed production line at our converting facility,” says Lee. “We completed successful trials this past August and developed a video to visually convey the automated process – setup of the carton, application of the tag, reading of the NFC chip, recording of key information, and ejection of compromised packages.

“Throughout the trials process, we developed multiple structural design iterations to enable bidirectional carton panels that not only house the tag, but also protect it during shipment and filling processes on our customers’ production lines. We were able to take testing one step further by conducting trials on our own filling lines at our contract packaging services facility – this is an excellent indicator of success, given this equipment is similar to our customers’,” he says.

After trials, Jones worked with Thinfilm to complete a comprehensive evaluation program to achieve the Preferred Converter status. “This involved demonstrating our ability to establish key production processes and consistently meet designated standards related to carton design, tag application, process control, in-line testing/discrimination, product quality, data management, transfer/security, training and support,” Lee says. 

 

Jones applies the OpenSense tags to cartons in a high-speed automated process.

The NFC OpenSense tags are intended to provide ongoing security. “One of the key security features of the OpenSense tag is the fact it is not rewritable,” says Lee. “The tag stores its unique ID physically, instead of using rewritable memory. Current tags in the marketplace could be rewritten in the field, which is of concern from a counterfeiting perspective. In order to counterfeit an OpenSense tag, the counterfeiter would need to build a semiconductor fabrication plant, which involves millions of dollars of equipment. The unique tag IDs are then provided to the customer in a cloud database, which they can use to resolve to their own respective databases. This allows customers to maintain the concept of ‘rewritable’ tags--in that they could change the information retrieved through the tag via a secure portal in the cloud--but they also maintain the security of the physical method so tags cannot be rewritten in the field by counterfeiters. Ultimately, the unique tag IDs can be tied to content that is dynamic and controlled by the customer.”

Pharmaceutical companies can verify the contents of the tags by modifying their production lines or processes. “The customer would need to have a reader placed on their line for verification of OpenSense tags on each individual item,” Lee says. “If the customer chooses to use sampling verification methods, then an NFC-enabled smartphone is all that would be needed to verify tag contents.”

The tags can also complement human readable codes and bar codes to help support serialization and Unique Device Identification. “The OpenSense tag would do this by tying its unique ID to a database with human-readable codes, as well as GS1 codes with the standard numerical identifiers,” says Lee.

 

The NFC OpenSense tags can communicate with patients and consumers with an NFC-enabled smartphone. 

They can also support ongoing marketing and communication. “With the tag’s ability to direct a patient to internet-based content, our customers could also use packaging as a portal to more marketing and educational information about a given medication,” says Lee. “These tags can uniquely provide a pre- and post-sales context (which may not be applicable for Rx products) where different messaging can be provided based upon whether a package has been opened. Every time the tag is tapped by an NFC-enabled device, metadata regarding the interaction is recorded and tracked for data analytics purposes, as well. For example, a customer of ours may be able to determine consumer interactions based upon geography, see where a product sells regionally, and redirect communication efforts from a high-selling region to one with lower sales.”

Jones continues to develop various intelligent solutions for packaging. “Our integration of Thinfilm OpenSense tags with paperboard pharma packaging is just one of the flexible solutions offered to our customers,” says Lee. “We can also apply capacitive touchscreen-sensitive inks to packaging, which facilitates other types of consumer interaction with touchscreen devices for marketing and brand protection. What’s more, we are developing conductive ink applications to connect sensor technology inside packaging to promote medication adherence or assist with cold chain monitoring. Overall, Jones realized that one solution is not enough to meet our customers' needs, which is why we are building a portfolio of options that offer the right solutions and the right value propositions for each customer’s specific requirements.”

For more details, visit http://www.jonespackaging.com/printed-packaging/intelligent-packaging.

Looking for more ideas for cartons and product security? Visit WestPack February 7-9 in Anaheim for a range of exhibitors and educational opportunities.
 

Acquisition unites two sealing tech companies, advances automation possibilities

Acquisition unites two sealing tech companies, advances automation possibilities
The SencorpWhite and Accu-Seal teams together

SencorpWhite, known in the medical device packaging industry for its CeraTek family of constant-heat sealers, has acquired impulse sealing machinery provider Accu-Seal. According to Kent Hevenor, VP of CeraTek Sales for SencorpWhite, Accu-Seal will be a wholly owned subsidiary of SencorpWhite and will maintain its own brand identity as Accu-Seal.

The acquisition positions SencorpWhite and Accu-Seal to work together to produce automated systems that utilize Accu-Seal’s impulse sealing technology. SencorpWhite has made recent strides in automating the sealing process. According to Hevenor, “there is a push for an increase in automation versus manual processes. This acquisition will help SencorpWhite by allowing us to utilize the automation expertise of our home office in concert with Accu-Seal’s impulse sealing technology to develop the right solution for every customer.” New systems will be offered in both proprietary custom and standard configurations, the company reports.

Hevenor tells PMP News that “one of the challenges that we are seeing for medical device manufacturers is an increased pressure for risk mitigation from regulatory bodies. Automation is the primary solution to this challenge and this acquisition will benefit Accu-Seal by providing them access to more engineering resources from the SencorpWhite home office to provide customized solutions to meet these risk mitigation needs.”

In addition, Hevenor also notes that “larger device manufacturing companies are undergoing a lot of merger and acquisition activity, and there is a flurry of new start-up business entering the medical device space.” To address this trend, SencorpWhite and Accu-Seal can now offer a greater range of products to serve both start-up companies and large manufacturers, says the spokesperson. “Also, with a larger geographic footprint we are now able to provide longer business hours and enhanced service capabilities with a bi-coastal operation that brings us closer to our customers,” he says.

Accu-Seal will continue operations in San Marcos, CA, allowing both Massachusetts-based SencorpWhite and Accu-Seal to extend service and engineering support. “Medical device manufacturers can expect to receive the same great quality products and services that they have come to expect from both SencorpWhite and Accu-Seal along with extended business hours, improved service capabilities, a greater geographic presence and more support every step of the way,” says Hevenor.

Adds Brian Urban, CEO of SencorpWhite:
 “SencorpWhite’s acquisition of Accu-Seal adds to our current sealer offerings and helps us expand our reach. This investment represents an important strategic opportunity that broadens our capacity, increases the markets we serve and enhances our ability to provide excellence in customer service and support.” 


“When looking for a buyer, we wanted one that would not only strengthen the Accu-Seal brand, but also share in our company’s commitment to innovation, product quality and customer service, sustaining the legacy we have worked to build over 45 years,” stated Accu-Seal’s General Manager Lesley Jensen. “SencorpWhite meets that criteria, and we are looking forward to working together to continue to deliver the reliability and value our customers expect.”

For more information, visit http://sencorpwhite.com and be sure to visit MD&M West/WestPack in Anaheim February 7-9, 2017, to see SencorpWhite at Booth #1943 and Accu-Seal at Booth #5439.

A toast to 2016’s most spirited packages

A toast to 2016’s most spirited packages
Wine and beer dominate the top-performing beverage packaging articles of the year through innovative decoration, designs and more.

We celebrate 2016 with this 6-pack of the year’s top beverage packaging articles. Spoiler alert: It’s all about wine and beer.

The winding down of 2016 signals the start of celebrations that often acknowledge the past months’ accomplishments. We do that in grand packaging style by toasting the top-performing beverage packaging articles of the year. These happened to center entirely on beer and wine, popular subcategories overflowing with innovative labels and packaging designs among other value-added embellishments.

We open up our 6-pack of these top-read stories with #6 that dates to early July, when we posted an article about a series of peculiarly coded labels printed with letters and numbers. The unique alphanumeric symbols decorate a line of 6 beers from Denmark’s TO ØL Brewery. The article presented a triple mystery that lured readers: What do the labels’ codes mean? And from what cult classic movie does the line of colorful brews draw its inspiration? And finally, what does the brewer’s name signify?

If you love a mystery as much as many hundreds of readers, then you’ll want to test your deductive skills by examining the clues in Can you read this mysteriously coded beer label?

Wine labels with a lot of character…

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Explore fresh food and beverage packaging and design ideas during WestPack, February 7-9, 2017, in Anaheim, CA

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#5  

As wine aisles swell with an ever-rising sea of brands, wine producers are looking to increasingly rich and imaginative narratives on which to build their brands. Often, these narratives have nothing at all to do with the origins of the wine itself. Rather, these brands borrow from historical events or are based in universal human experience. The resulting brands are engaging customers and moving a whole lot of wine in the process as can be seen in these two success stories from 19 Crimes and Josh Cellars found in How character-driven labels are driving wine sales.

Next: A unique single-serve wine format is revealed.

#4

This posting from January drew interest throughout the year: An exclusive insider piece sparked by a Shark Tank episode that resulted in a new packaging concept for single-serve wine.

 “We have recently developed a new packaging solution for the single-serve wine market, it's called Couple and it's a full- stem interlocking and stackable wine glass,” says inventor Gus Toca, president/CEO of 201 Innovations. “I started designing a glass that would have the precious full stem that has been a staple of the wine industry, but also would have the same space saving characteristics of stackable cups.”

Toca delivers the details in Single-serve stemmed wine packaging coupled for efficiency.

Next: You can bank on this micro-bubbly canned beer innovation.

#3

Vault Brewing Company, Yardley, PA, opened its brewpub doors in 2012 as a family venture, getting the name from the fact the building had been a bank from the 1800s until recently.

“We’re very much about an immersive beer drinking experience,” explains co-founder James Cain.  “We go to great lengths to control everything that we can, which is where the concept of Nitro Cans came into play. We really wanted to be able to preserve the nitrogenated drinking experience that we’re providing in the brewpub elsewhere as well.”

We unlocked the brewer’s secrets in Nitro can delivers widget-less pub-style beer.

Beer packaging that’s full of visible, invisible and tactile surprises.

#2

I’m not sure what is more surprising, Oculto beer’s packaging or the fact that this article dates to 2015, yet rose to near the very top of 2016’s best-read beverage packaging list. Regardless, Mysterious Oculto beer serves on-package surprises documents the many value-add aspects of the Friday March 13, 2015, introduction of a new lager beer, Oculto, that featured a novel formulation and branding that centers on spontaneous nights out with friends. The packaging for bottles, cans and multipacks demonstrates how far Anheuser-Busch went to leverage the brand’s elements of mystery and intrigue.

We end our Top 6 on a very high note…

…when it comes to PageView metrics, our quantitative measure at the center of these analyses, with the #1 read beverage packaging article of 2016 about piscine packaging that resulted in analytics that were astronomical. They reflect the fact that this article drew in tens of thousands of readers from outside our world of packaging professionals who were lured by a combination of fishing and beer for a wildly popular contest involving gold trophy cans and awesome grand prizes.

If you were one of the minority who missed it, the best-read article of any kind during 2016 at PackagingDigest.com was Fishermen reel in prizes in a Busch Beer promotion that features piscine beverage packaging.

PS: This article also garnered what must be one of the largest number of reader comments, which at this writing was 90.

Lastly, we offer a toast to your packaging success the rest of 2016 and throughout 2017!

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Explore fresh food and beverage packaging and design ideas during WestPack, February 7-9, 2017, in Anaheim, CA

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Proactive asset management for pre-owned packaging machinery

Proactive asset management for pre-owned packaging machinery
Companies like Stage Coach Sauces LLC, which specializes in bottling pourable food products, have found value in second-hand packaging equipment.

Ben Potenza, vp marketing at EquipNet Inc., a global online marketplace for used manufacturing and production equipment, offers advice for buyers and sellers of second-hand machinery.

What are the drivers behind the current surge in demand for second-hand manufacturing and packaging equipment?

Potenza: The global economic downturn has had ramifications that endure today, and while the North American industry as a whole rallied strongly, ensuring business growth is backed up by operational efficiencies and prudent investment remains a priority for most organizations.

The United States, Canada and Mexico maintained their dominant position in the global packaging market during this challenging period. The increasing consumption of packaged goods across a range of consumer areas in these geographies continues to provide a major growth opportunity for the North American packaging market, which is predicted to rise to $186 billion by 2017 (1).

A number of key social and market trends have also had a major impact on developments in packaging in North America over recent years. The increase in smaller households has led to an accompanying rise in demand for smaller pack sizes. Continuing consumer demand for convenience has driven packaging developments in the food and drink sector, while the growing number of people interested in health and beauty products has led to packaging developments in the cosmetics and toiletries sector. Alongside this, growing sustainability concerns continue to drive manufacturers to reduce their environmental impact, and minimizing waste ranks high on the global packaging industry’s agenda.

Amidst these changes, businesses in this sector are now facing increasing competition from emerging economies and the threat of declining market share, with Asia predicted to represent over 40% of global packaging demand by 2018 (2). This puts increasing pressure on North American packaging firms to grow, while controlling expenditure on new manufacturing equipment in the face of the ever-changing demand for new packaging developments.

Businesses of all shapes and sizes—from cutting-edge research companies and burgeoning SMEs, to multi-national, multi-facility brand giants—are now recognizing the benefits and reaping the financial rewards of buying second-hand equipment, and selling or redeploying their own under-used equipment.

Figure 1: EquipNet’s ‘Value Control Model’ shows how redeployment, negotiated sales with managed pricing through an on-line marketplace, competitive auction events and clearance programs fit together to deliver a consolidated service that ensures a ‘seller’ company achieves maximum return and at the same time sees equipment come into the channels that are used by a ‘buying’ company. In many cases, a business is both a seller and a buyer at different times.

Based on your years of experience in this market, what’s been developing in this field more recently?

Potenza: The heady pace of new product development (NPD) in consumer goods is changing the face of production lines on an almost daily basis. Manufacturing processes are constantly evolving as producers vie for consumer attention and spend in an increasingly busy marketplace. Packaging plays a vital role in the supply chain, maintaining product quality, attracting buyers at point of purchase, informing consumers and enhancing their product experience. Alongside the use of new materials and components in the products themselves, developments in packaging production are driving a similar transformation.

As new product lines and their associated packaging are launched and old ones adapted or replaced, or as companies merge, relocate and open new facilities, equipment can fall out of use. With the fast pace of NPD, it is not surprising that millions of dollars are now tied up in manufacturing equipment. Redesign of packaging and use of new materials for marketing and waste reduction purposes can all too easily lead to machinery being side-lined. Importantly, industry surveys suggest that an average of around 10% of a company’s asset base is lying idle, and that most do not have good visibility of these underutilized assets. This illustrates the size of opportunity for a proactive approach to asset management.

The rise of the internet has seen the birth of various websites to meet this growing demand for buying and selling used equipment. However, with many sites simply providing an online portal for buyers to dispose of unwanted items to the highest bidder, few of these add any value to what is often seen as a purely financial transaction. The human touch – which brings with it industry knowledge, expert advice and guidance to both buyer and seller – is sadly lacking.

Best practice in proactive asset management has been developing over the last decade. Specialist service companies staffed by industry experts and proven project management professionals have emerged to become leaders in this new field. They offer an approach and services that are significantly different from the ‘traditional equipment dealer or auctioneer’. As one of the preeminent vendors in this field, EquipNet provides a holistic approach to surplus asset management that balances the needs of both sellers and buyers. This is effectively illustrated using its ‘Value Control Model’ (above).

How have buyers found the purchase and use of second-hand equipment?

Potenza: Terry Geck is founder of Florida-based Stage Coach Sauces LLC, which specializes in bottling pourable food products. The company has been investing in second-hand packaging equipment (Figure 2) in order to upgrade the processes at its facility, increasing throughput by debottlenecking the packaging lines.

 “The savings that can be made by investing in used equipment are significant - as much as 20 to 70 percent,” says Geck. “Re-using equipment can transform the economics of a re-tooling or upgrading project, but you need a trustworthy partner to source good kit. They need to know the market and the machinery inside out, and be able to set a deal at the right price for both the seller and buyer.”

“My biggest concern is that you will buy junk. Some of the equipment I have bought has been in the region of $50,000 - a significant sum. So establishing a quality supplier relationship is critical.”

“EquipNet was recommended to me by other companies and their professionalism and quality is now so valuable to us. They have been very good at researching any guarantees available from the vendor and in transferring them through to us. All the equipment we’ve purchased from EquipNet has been of really high quality and worked reliably.”

Sources:   

1. https://www.smitherspira.com/products/market-reports/packaging/north-american-us-canada-mexico-packaging-industry

2.  http://www.smitherspira.com/news/2013/december/global-packaging-industry-market-growth-to-2018

Next: Advice for machinery sellers and final thoughts

What should a business do when considering selling its unwanted manufacturing or packaging equipment?

Potenza: Surplus machinery can often be adapted for re-use elsewhere, rather than being disposed. Redeployment cannot be successfully and consistently achieved, however, unless there is a central tracking platform installed within all company locations. Users should be able to post, track, identify and internally redeploy equipment that is not being used in its present location ahead of any decision to move to external sale or purchase of additional new items. An established example of best practice in this area is EquipNet’s ARMS (Asset Redeployment Management System) platform. This simple, yet robust program features: workflow management; multiple access levels for plant managers and executives across the business;  search functionality and comprehensive listing specifications, providing information that lets the company know exactly what they have and where it’s located.

When redeployment of surplus assets isn’t feasible and a company needs to recoup as much money as possible in a short timeframe, an auction becomes the dependable channel to achieve this goal. Auctions can, therefore, be a very cost-effective route for other businesses to boost their own manufacturing plant with used equipment. But negotiating the auction process – whether buying or selling – is fraught with hazards and success depends on many factors. A specialist partner should advise on the right approach in each case. Options might include online auctions, live/webcast auction events, and sealed bid events. Using a company with specific industry experience combined with a solid reputation is crucial to success.

Where redeployment or resale are not possible, assets that hold very little value are best dealt with through clearance by donations, scrap, and environmental recycling. Companies should consider the scrap value of idle equipment and compare that amount against the market sale value to arrive at a strategy that will generate the highest return. EquipNet routinely advises clients in this area.

What should companies consider when seeking equipment for new facilities or introducing new production lines to support NPD?

Potenza: For companies opening a new facility, second-hand equipment can be a cost-effective way to provide the machinery required, reducing capital expenditure at the outset to deliver a speedy return on overall investment.

Despite the constant introduction of ‘brand new’ products and packaging, closer examination in many instances will reveal it’s often a case of evolution rather than revolution; even if designs and materials change fundamentally, many manufacturing processes are replicated in new packaging, for example a folding or adhesive process in box production. This means that sourcing equipment that has fallen out of use elsewhere – either from another company site or from an external provider, may be a more sensible option than investing in costly new items.

However, purchasing second-hand equipment from an external source can be challenging. Firstly, sourcing the right piece of machinery for the required purpose can be time consuming. Once a potential item has been located online, companies may then face considerable challenges in investigating its provenance, condition and fitness for purpose, and negotiating a suitable price in line with market value. Overcoming the logistics of shipping it to their own facility can be equally hard, particularly for overseas transactions. Buyers must navigate their way through a minefield of international trade agreements, regulatory frameworks, packaging standards and logistics practices.

Many companies lacking the necessary time and resources now look to an outsourced partner. An expert with specialist knowledge of the industry and its equipment and dedicated resources can add considerable value, seeking out suitable equipment and alerting potential buyers when appropriate machinery is available for sale or when there is a relevant auction. Such a partner can also assist with shipping, advising on details such as location, zip code and weight, and providing any available product warranties from the source.

What parting advice do you have for our audience of packaging professionals?

Potenza: Smart companies looking to succeed in today’s competitive international marketplace have integrated asset management into their operations – redeploying assets where they can, turning genuinely surplus equipment into cash, and maximizing the cost-saving potential of second-hand equipment purchases as they develop and grow. However, as we have seen, the asset management process is complex and many managers are choosing to work with a specialist partner that can add value by advising on every aspect of buying and selling used equipment.

In the packaging sector, where ambitious growth targets and NPD are allied to tough efficiency and sustainability goals, a reliable partner with industry knowledge can be critical to success, ensuring operational efficiency and delivering a major positive impact on a company’s bottom line.

Ben Potenza is vp of marketing at EquipNet, having joined the company as the second overall employee in 1999. In this role, he oversees a world-class, global marketing team that plans and executes all of their inbound and outbound marketing activities.

EquipNet, Inc.

5 Dan Road, Canton, MA 02021

Tel: 781-821.3482

Fax: 617-671-1269

[email protected]

Tamper-evident sports closure opens with the push of a button

Tamper-evident sports closure opens with the push of a button
The push-button feature on the Avantage cap clearly shows that the bottle has been opened.

The Avantage cap that opens with one hand also clearly indicates tamper-evidence and has an integrated drop band that tethers it to the bottle.

Do you like things that conveniently open with the push of a button? Then you'd probably like the new Avantage sports closure as much as I did because it adds push-button convenience to bottled drinks. It offers several distinct advantages found in its ingenious design that balances convenience with safety. It looks different from other sports caps because it is different and offers these features:

The tamper-evidence is compromised when the flip-top cap is removed by pushing the button on the closure front;

Once opened, the press button has a permanent whitening effect to indicate that the product has been opened; and

It offers a spill-proof valve.

And thanks to a patented Stay-With drop band, the polypropylene closure remains tethered to the bottle top as a safety precaution for children to prevent choking.

At Pack Expo two weeks ago where it was on display, Matt Schalewski, AptarGroup account manager, told Packaging Digest that the tethering of the cap is also intended to reduce littering while increasing recycling rates for the closures.

Intended for on-the-go-beverages, the Avantage was commercialized in October in the United Kingdom for a children’s beverage from Ribena that’s available in 200- and 250-mL sizes.

According to AptarGroup, several independent focus groups have shown that consumers young and old are automatically drawn to press buttons. That’s borne out by the highly favorable reviews posted at the Ribena website that specifically call out the closure:

"Both my girls loved their Ribena Minis. I was particularly impressed with the opening and non-drip tops! Thanks to the Ribena minis gang for making my life as a busy mum a little easier"

Zoe, London

"The Less mess cap is perfect when you’re out and about, they are mum friendly, bag friendly and car friendly."

Sarah, West Moseley

The closure is available in a 28mm neck finish for cold ambient filling and has a 7-mm SimpliSqueeze orifice.

For more information, visit the Avantage page at the AptarGroup website.

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Find new food and beverage packaging ideas and more at PackEx Montréal, November 30, 2016 to December 1, 2016. 

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6 questions you should ask before choosing a serialization solution

6 questions you should ask before choosing a serialization solution
Adents's Dave Harty discussed serialization and its partnership with Microsoft on Adents Prodigi cloud platform

With about one year to go before U.S. deadlines begin phasing in, serialization continues to present challenges for pharmaceutical companies. “Time’s running out,” says Jim Cummings, vice president, Americas, for Adents. He spoke with PMP News at Pharma Expo, held November 6-9 in Chicago. 

But rather than rush into any solution just to get started, pharma companies “should pay attention to what they’re getting,” Cummings advises. “Learn about the serialization requirements so you ask the right questions, and don’t just let a consultant point you toward a particular vendor.”

Cummings offers a list of key questions pharmaceutical companies should be asking their vendors before embarking investing in a particular solution: 

  • Can I use commercially available vision systems and other equipment?
  • How long will it take to implement a solution?
  • Will I need to shut down my line, and if so, for how long?
  • If I need to make a software update, how long will it take?
  • Can I aggregate with a particular solution?
  • What is the total cost of ownership?

“Keep in mind that serialization is not just one project,” says Cummings. “There will be more products to serialize and more changes.” 

He adds that serialization “should be simpler, much quicker, and with less total cost.” Adents works to minimize costs by being “equipment agnostic,” he adds. Its software is 100% configurable, and packaging lines do not need to be shut down to configure them—changes are made to the company’s site server, he explains.

The only time lines need to be shut down is when packaging machinery HMIs need to be updated and tested, Cummings says.

Adents can generate serial numbers from its own site server and communicate with a company’s server; Adents can also store and report commissioned numbers.

Adents recently partnered with Micorsoft to jointly develop and commercialize a new Cloud platform named Adents Prodigi, which will be available in the first quarter of 2017. Adents Prodigi is a Level 4 traceability solution for centrally managing pharmaceutical regulatory requirements. The approach utilizes Microsoft Azure to enable pharma manufacturers to securely generate, exchange, and control huge amounts of serialization data. The platform also facilitates data analysis for real-time data visualization and analysis as well as OEE and productivity monitoring across production sites. “Our alliance with the leader of Business Intelligence will be a game changer on the global market for unit identification. Indeed, this will finally give the pharmaceutical industry the means to tap into the full potential of the wealth of information generated through serialization,” stated Christophe Devins, founder and CEO of Adents, in the release.

Adents Prodigi can also host business applications offered by third parties to fully exploit data stored on the platform, the release reports.  

For more details, visit www.adents.com.

Click here for details on the Drug Supply Chain Security Act (Title II of the Drug Quality and Security Act).

Live from Chicago . . . it’s Pack Expo 2016

Veteran packaging journalists file updates direct from the show floor, sharing hot news on emerging packaging technologies, exclusive interviews, new product debuts, video clips and more. Get the latest report here.

Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Every Pack Expo, new packaging themes/trends emerge. After three days of walking the show, one for this year is machine accessibility—for faster changeover, and easier maintenance and/or cleaning.

The 9500 vertical form-fill-seal system from Pacmac (Booth S-2451) is the poster child of machine accessibility, with doors that open in front and on both sides. The newest sanitary design launched at Pack Expo.

Addressing the need for easy-to-clean machines, Pacmac built VFFS systems with a forming tube and sealing jaws that slide out, solid 2-inch stainless steel frame (no tubing), and angled cabinets and doors.

The intermittent-motion system can run various bag formats, including pillow and zipper bags. Speed varies with bag size and product loading, but one customer is running bags of fresh carrots at about 150 bags per minute.

While easy cleaning was the impetus for the open design, it also helps reduce changeover time and facilitates servicing.

— Lisa McTigue Pierce, executive editor

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

RM2ELIoT (Electronic Link to the Internet of Things) is not just a radio-frequency-enabled pallet—by the way, it does have an RFID tag as well—but one introduced during Pack Expo Intl. that provides unprecedented track-and-trace visibility into the supply chain using cellphone technology. Embedded in the pallet is AT&T’s LET-M network connection housed in a credit-card-sized form factor and powered by a battery with a 10-year life. The data collected as the pallet travels through the supply chain is available via the cloud.

With a January launch planned, the reusable pallet is suitable for pharmaceutical supply chains and other applications. Rick San Martin, executive vp, says food manufacturer interest in the technology is also high.

The technology enables the vendor to track the pallets to help reduce pallet shrink and make the high-end pallet available at a lower cost, notes David Kalan, vp marketing and business development.

The pallets are available for rent, lease or purchase.

RM2 Booth E-6785

— Rick Lingle, technical editor

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

SnapLid technology extends the applicability of form-fill-seal rigid cup production beyond single-serve products.

SnapLid opens up the multiserve realm for in-line FFS cup packaging by sealing and resealing the container and eliminates the need for a separate overcap.

Containers can range from 16oz to 32oz made of either PET or PP with a corresponding heat-sealed lid.

How good is the reseal? The nonaluminum polymer lid remains leak-free when the tub is filled with water and turned upside down, says Synerlink’s Justin Stovall, key accounts manager USA.

Applicable products include pumpable foods like yogurt and dips as well as dry foods like snacks and cookies.

The system operates at 25 to 30 cycles per minute, or 10,000 to 40,000 cups per hour.

Introduced this month after years of development, SnapLid was the innovation that drew the most interest in the large Barry Wehmiller booth, according to Stovall.

SnapLid permits FFS rigid plastic packaging to compete against preformed containers. Packaging Digest also  learned that the first application is expected to be in Europe.

Synerlink, Booth S-2100

— Rick Lingle, technical editor

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

 

Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

How can case-sealing tape be engineered to apply manually with the consistency and reliability akin to automatic taping systems, even by different operators?  It’s a sticky problem that Shurtape Technologies LLC addressed by tapping its taping expertise in developing the Folded-Edge Hand Dispenser. Its debut at Pack Expo represents the company’s entry into the manual case sealing market.

Bradley Dunlap, product manager, packaging explains that the dispenser offers:

  • Improved wipe-down pressure as tape is applied, which results in deeper penetration of the tape’s adhesive into the carton to produce tamper-evident seals;
  • A retractable/pivoting safety blade that is shielded from accidental contact during the application process;
  • Visible tape length indicators provide tab length control to reduce excessive tape use.

The dispenser is available in 2-inch and 3-inch wide versions, the FE-2” and the FE-3”.

The company’s Folded-Edge Technology strengthens the tape edges to the point that CPG customers can downgauge the tape itself, for example from 1.9mil to 1.6mil, according to Dunlap.

Shurtape Technologies LLC, Booth N-4940

— Rick Lingle, technical editor

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

To automate bag width changeover and severely cut changeover time, the AutoPro servo adjust feature changes five axis of motion on the Morpheus or Apollo vertical form-fill-seal machines from Matrix Packaging Machinery:

1. Printer registration;

2. Printer position;

3. Registration sensor;

4. Edge-guide sensor location;

5. Vertical seal position.

All this at a low cost because Matrix builds the servo motors itself by fitting a common DC motor with an encoder, packaged in an IP65 enclosure.

In addition to increasing output by cutting changeover downtime, packaging operations will also experience less wasted film/product/electricity/air.

AutoPro comes standard on Morpheus systems and is available at an added cost (between $10,000 and $15,000) on Apollo baggers.

Matrix Packaging Machinery, Booth S-3726

— Lisa McTigue Pierce, executive editor

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

“Intelligent bridges between islands of automation” that's how Bill Torrens, director of sales of Otto Motors (Booth E-10147), described their intelligent automated guided vehicle (AGV) system. Unlike most AGVs that must navigate based on fixed paths or beacons, Otto works the way we do. It maps the plant and carries materials where needed as needed. It frees up valuable floor space on the line because it can bring a single box of components where needed multiple times when needed rather than an entire pallet at a time.

It is the Uber of materials movement in the modern plant.

— John Henry, contributing writer

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Gregory Zaic (above), president of Maruho Hatsujyo Innovations (MHI), is highlighting the company's new blister machine, the Eagle, at Pharma Expo booth #W-960. MHI is the U.S. subsidiary of Kyoto-based Maruho Hatsujyo Kogyo, Japan’s second largest pharmaceutical packaging machinery manufacturer, and the Eagle is an American version of MHK’s PF-D1S, a compact, servo-driven, blister forming machine.

The Eagle can produce up to 100 blister cards per minute at a maximum index length of 90 mm and maximum index width of 130 mm. It can handle all commonly used forming and lidding materials.

Changeover can be performed in less than 10 minutes, Zaic explains. The system features both platen forming and rotary sealing.

For more information, visit www.mhi-innovations.com.

— Daphne Allen, executive editor

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

Design services, serialization support

Mike Mazur, Essentra's senior vice president, commercial health & personal care Americas region, says that the packaging solutions provider focuses on helping its pharmaceutical and medical device customers get products to patients faster. Mazur points to the company's new Design Hub service, which helps customers design packaging for new product launches. Design Hub offers both structural and creative packaging design and can reduce supply chain complexity. The one-stop-shop packaging and design service is led by Alan Davies, who has more than 20 years of experience enhancing some of the world’s best-known consumer brands, Essentra reports. 

Essentra is also highlighting its approaches to serialization and tamper evidence in Pharma Expo Booth W-584. Essentra can serialize cartons through late-stage customization, and it offers a range of tamper verification technologies. 

For more details, visit www.essentra.com.

— Daphne Allen, executive editor

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Without compromising safety, the new AutoBag 550 design gives unprecedented access to the machine for easy loading of premade-bags-on-a-roll, as well as easy and fast no-tool changeover and servicing.

Bag changeover takes less than two minutes, thanks to the system’s open design, auto-thread feature, servo motors and operator-friendly tension-control unit.

According to Automated Packaging Systems’ global marketing communications manager Lynne Greenfeather, the company was able to design in advanced features, like servo motors and the Android-based human-machine interface (HMI), without driving up the cost.

Another notable feature is how some components, like the valves, are tucked away in a drawer—out of the operator’s way but highly accessible for servicing.

And about safety…because the heater bar assembly unit doesn’t strike with immediate force, which is inherently safer, the company was able to remove guarding for better access all around, but especially important to speed up bag loading for higher productivity and output.

A new heater control board provides consistent and instant heat for the impulse-wire sealing mechanism. Automated Packaging even consulted with an industrial design firm to create the machine’s sleek, attractive appearance.

While I was talking with Lynne about the machine, a trio of existing customers came up to the machine and pointed out to me the new features they appreciated the most: one of which is next-bag-out. Moving the printer to the front of the machine (instead of keeping it at the back) means you don’t have to count how many bags you need printed before the end of the run. You finish your run and switch to something else, without wasting a lot of already-printed-with-the-previous-info bags.

Automated Packaging Systems, Booth S-2438

— Lisa McTigue Pierce, executive editor

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Domino’s inkjet-replacing F720i high-performance fiber laser delivers high-resolution laser marking onto aluminum beverage cans. The IP65-rated F720i applies standard codes at a rate of 90,000 cans per hour and has the capability to deliver complex codes of more than 60 characters at a rate of 42,000 cans per hour.

It uses no consumables and can create intricately detailed or unique codes for promotions and other applications.

“It can help customers meet legislative requirements for clear, legible and long-lasting characters for traceability,” says Jon Hall, laser product marketing manager. “We’re working with major brands that want to eliminate inkjet coding.”

A system in operation in Europe marks can bottoms with an indelible 30ms focused pulse that oxidizes the aluminum to a depth of 10-15 microns, he adds.

Domino North America Booth S-3536

— Rick Lingle, technical editor

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

From at least 50 yards down the show aisle, a pallet load beckoned me…what was it? Logo Wrap, a feature on the Raptor Plus HPL (high-profile/logo) semi-automatic stretch wrapper from Muller LCS, caught my eye with its large branded wrap. I had to see this close up.

There is a separate roll, printed however you’d like, that, near the end of unitizing your pallet load, attaches itself to the regular stretch film and makes a full wrap around the load. This lets you quickly and cost-effectively identify shipments for added branding or security.

The Logo Wrap feature can be turned on and off as needed. It comes standard on the Raptor Plus HPL, which costs about $16,000.

Muller LCS, Booth S-3100

— Lisa McTigue Pierce, executive editor

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

The Rapid Clean Piston Filler for pumpable foods is designed to speed changeovers for volumes of 1oz to 17oz, which Raque says handles 85% of customer requirements. The servo-driven linear actuator piston pumps provide precise delivery of set fill volumes.

Raque claims 5 minute disassembly and 7 minute reassembly paired with faster cleanup.

Additionally, the demo system had no Human Machine Interface—the system is run wirelessly from a tablet or other touchpad device using an HTML5 browser.

For customer lines that can be as much as 160ft long, that mobility is a major convenience and time-savings.

Raque Food Systems, Booth S-3634

— Rick Lingle, technical editor

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

CSi Industries, Booth N-5350, is a name better known abroad than in the U.S. but that is quickly changing. CSI makes a palletizing system based on a 7-axis robot. It is a nice implementation but not all that unusual. There are two things that really brought this to my attention:

1. The standard end-of-arm tooling is universal and can handle bundles, boxes or open trays with no changeover between them. It also has suction grippers so it can handle slipsheets.

2. The best part is their business model. The machine is designed to run a range of products in its standard configuration. This standardization and modular design means that it is low cost compared to similar palletizers and it is fast delivery, sometimes from stock.

I predict that this standardization of packaging designs, using robotics, is going to be the coming trend.

— John Henry, contributing writer

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints 

It's not a stretch to say the engineers at Orion (Booth S-3842) have improved on the design and operation of an auto-guided pallet wrapper—and on their first go at it.

The new AG 360 machine solves what product line manager Gene Carlson says are three common customer complaints:

1. Battery life

The AG 360 offers 50% longer life than most competitor, allowing operations to run an 8-hour shift without needing to recharge. And, by monitoring the battery level, the AG 360 knows when to stop wrapping but still keep enough juice to return to its charging area. The charging area can be anywhere there is a standard outlet: 15-amp, 110 volts.

2. HMI interface

The AG 360 uses the same operator friendly and intuitive control system as other Orion systems. It offers easy navigation and on-screen troubleshooting.

3. Flimsy fender

The AG 360 has a robust fender.

It also has a counterweight in the base to offset the 95-inch height of the wrapping tower for greater stability.

— Lisa McTigue Pierce, executive editor 

Page 1: Let’s talk ‘open design’ for packaging machinery

Page 2: Meet the IoT cloud-connected pallet

Page 3: Multiserve reclosable FFS tub eliminates an overcap

Page 4: Manual case sealing engineered with superior consistency

Page 5: Low-cost servo motors reduce bagger changeover by 75%

Page 6: Self-driving vehicle rides outside the lines

Page 7: New blister machine changes over in 10 minutes

Page 8: Design services, serialization support

Page 9: Safe access key to bag loader’s easy operation and changeover

Page 10: Laser system makes a high-resolution impact on beverage cans

Page 11: Stretch wrapper brands pallet loads for easy identity and added security

Page 12: Rapid clean servo-driven precision filler has HMI-free wireless interface

Page 13: Unique palletizer business model puts stock in standardization

Page 14: New pallet wrapper solves 3 common complaints

Packaging machinery tour showcases cutting-edge technology

Packaging machinery tour showcases cutting-edge technology
No Technology Tour is complete without robotics such as this efficient modular system. Credit: Premier Tech Chronos

Technology surrounding robotics, modularity and hygiene design for food packaging equipment and more are some of the on-trend developments to be presented during an exclusive insider tour during PackEx Montreal later this month.

Interested in gaining industry insights while checking out new machinery in a conveniently prepackaged multi-booth tour with other packaging professionals? If so, please join us for a free tour during PackEx Montreal on Wed., Nov. 30 from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. The vendor managers from these select exhibitors will offer a debriefing of their latest offerings along with pointing to broader industry trends that these machines tap. We’ll set off in a small group from the CenterStage Booth #1625 to visit these exhibitors among others that are still being finalized at press time:

Multivac Canada Booth #1607 will be showcasing a complete “skin” packaging line reflective of growth in that market, according to Pat Laplante, the company’s marketing and sales support coordinator.

Machines on display also include two of the company’s most popular tray sealers and a double chamber vacuum packaging machine.

Premier Tech Chronos Booth #2307 will have a robotic modular palletizer in the booth (as seen in top lead photo). The main feature of this equipment is a modular design that can be easily adapted to different plant layouts. In fact, the entire system can be delivered to the production plant via modular skids all fitting onto a single trailer truck.

It is basically a pre-engineered machine which minimize manufacturing lead time, cost and time required for installation and commissioning.

This link uses 3D animation to clearly illustrate the possibilities of the system: http://www.ptchronos.com/en-ca/products/robotic-palletizing/robotic-modular-palletizer/?source=video&value=jHsRjke6fhI

VC999 Booth #1907 will feature a range of equipment highlighting trends in flow wrapping, thermoforming, metal detection, slicing and labeling (shown). Carl-Michel Cloutier, sales manager East Canada & distribution, reports that equipment will include vacuum chambers, tray sealers, flow wrapping machine, metal detector, rotary automatic bagger and portioner—on display for first time in a tradeshow in Canada—and a rollstock thermoforming machine.

Also, at least two other tours have been arranged during PackEx Montreal:

Wed., Nov. 30, from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m.: The Latest in Manufacturing Automation conducted by industry expert Jim Berretta; and

Thurs., Dec. 1, from 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. (noon): New Possibilities in Plastic Equipment & Materials led by Norbert Sparrow, editor in chief, PlasticsToday ; the  tour includes five vendor stops.

Digital Printing: 6 Ways it can Transform your Supply Chain

Your needs for labels, cartons, and other printed materials have evolved due to growing numbers of SKU’s and changes in product volumes. You no longer need blockbuster-sized volumes of identically printed labels; you need inventories right-sized to match demand, and you need to support the growing requirements for variable printing.

Digital printing can support these changes and help you transform your printed materials supply chain into a more flexible, on-demand, cost-effective one. In this exclusive SmartGuide sponsored by CCL Healthcare, “6 Ways Digital Printing Can Transform Your Supply Chain,” you’ll learn 6 key ways digital printing can help.

It’s Time to Transform Your Supply Chain.