Current topic – food packaging
Composite cans in innovation process
Composite cans belong to the group of wound containers. They combine several types of materials in their structure. Lightweight containers combined with a metal ring or a plastic closure or even a sifter represent a user-friendly type of consumer packaging. In most cases, the packaging is made more attractive by the means of a multicolor full-body label. They are used mainly for food and cosmetic products. Wound boxes are made of paper or board, thus being positivelly perceived as eco-friendly.
Only low-migration inks for food packaging!
It is advisable to the primary packaging which come into direct contact with packed food be printed only with so-called low-odor (low-hex) and low-migration or LH and LM inks. Low-odor inks contain only those substances that cannot affect the smell or taste of packed goods with their own smell or odor. Moreover, they do not contain any substance which could penetrate (migrate) through a pack’s inner wall to the food. Risk of migration may stem also from packaging materials themselves: namely krafters, folding cartons and films. The packaging material manufacturer as well as its distributor and the printer guarantee the packaging could not affect the food detrimentally. Up to this day, namely the company launching the packaging on the market is responsible for its wholesomeness; however, the printer should be made equally responsible in the EU from 2015.
Pâtés in plastic, ceramic, carton…
Customers prefer lightweight and easy-to-open containers. If the producer of a traditionally popular food manages to meet customer demands even in this aspect, its market opportunities will rise significantly. The ALIMPEX – MASO spol. s r. o. company can serve as an example; we visited the firm in August. The company and its product range have continually expanded since its formation. Consumers have been given the opportunity to choose not only from many types of pâté but also from various types of convenient or gift packaging at both the chain and specialized stores.
Main topic: Labeling, identification, traceability
Global Company Prefix – a cornerstone of identification
The GCP (Global Company Prefix) ranges among the most frequently used terms in every local GS1 organization. Its correct usage is a must for a well-working globally unique identification. The structure is based on a company’s identification number. This identification number joined to a well-known prefix 859 for the Czech Republic makes the user’s Global Company Prefix. All the key identification numbers within the GS1 System are based on GCPs, thus ensuring their international uniqueness.
Dangerous goods packing and labeling
Methods of packing and labeling dangerous goods intended for the carriage by road are determined in the ADR agreement. The agreement states the duty for each undertaking to appoint a safety adviser responsible for appropriate packaging, marking and labeling of dangerous goods. A safety adviser may perform his duties as an undertaking’s permanent employee or an external consultant. In the Czech Republic, only such an entity handling excepted or limited quantities or quantities that do not exceed those referred to in the agreement is not obliged to have an ADR safety adviser.
On-line labeling in practice
Design and data represent the content and essence of all packages at present. The design sells, and a producer putting wrong data on a pack could lose a significant amount of money. To print out the data from the system as soon as possible is a basic solution to the above mentioned problem. Thus a printer should be as close as possible to the goods intended to be labeled. The warehouses receiving the goods can serve as a practical example of on-line printers and terminals application.
Focused on materials – plastics
Injection molded vs. blow molded plastic packaging
Injection molding and blow molding, or a combination of these, range among the most common methods of plastic packaging fabrication. The most widely used injection molding is not limited on packaging production by far; we meet it in consumer application production and engineering, as well as the automotive industry. Injection molded products are famous for a very good dimensional and shape accuracy and a high fidelity of mechanical and physical properties. Injection molding is the most used plastics processing technology. This is a discontinual, cyclic process. Almost all types of thermoplastics can be injection molded.
Fresh „the best of“ flexible packaging
At this year’s Interpack, flexible packaging attracted the most attention. Such packages distinguish with a very low weight, usually striking and attractive graphic and good ergonomics (easy to open). The Volpak S.A. company came up with a revolutionary type of stand-up pouches – Brickpouch®. Even when partly emptied, the pouch is not endangered with deformation but remains very stable. Bosch Packaging Technology presented stand-up pouches with a closure manufactured through VFFS technology (Vertical Form Fill and Seal). EZ Square based on flexible multi-layer film can fully replace carton packaging. In particular, shrink labels with their graphic capabilities attracted attention.
Robots fill crates in a brewery
Platan Brewery has a long tradition of modernization. In 2006, a CIP station was completely modernized and a new beer filtration unit put to use. In 2009, a new Krones bottling line was added. A yeast propagation unit has been renewed, too, and a large refurbishment of a brewhouse and a malthouse is under preparation. Three years ago, the now former owner of Platan Brewery bought an older (previously used in Slovakia) FANUC palletizing line with two M-410i HW robots. They unload empty bottles from plastic crates and send them via conveyor downstream to bottling.
FM Logistic for Unilever
The FM Logistic company, logistic services provider, won an important client – the Unilever company – at the turn of 2010. The basic services requested in a tender were storage, distribution and repacking of chilled, ambient and HPC goods. The choice resulted from FM Logistic’s experiences with similar clients, the service level and flexibility, logistic synergy opportunities, capabilities to implement projects of a similar size, and last but not least, its financial stability. Distribution of the goods stored was commenced during May to August 2011.
Fresh fish packaging and distribution
Five times a week, fresh fish from almost all the world are being collected at the fish platform of MAKRO Čakovice. We were allowed to examine in person the way they are processed, inspected, packed and distributed further. Our guides were Bernard Schaut, Key Account Manager Fish, and Drahoslav Vochozka, Buyer. Amidst of the year, MAKRO launched an Express Delivery service, a direct distribution option for the HoReCa segment.
Children packaging is highly specific
Last August, a traditional Czech brand was relaunched on the local market by the company Efko – karton, s. r. o. after more than thirty years. During one single year, it has managed to restore this legendary toy’s popularity, which is confirmed by a rising sales curve. This motivates the producer to conceive new concepts steadily; we talked about these with the company owner Miroslav Kotík.