An increasing number of SKUs, changing packaging formats and sizes, and a growing interest in personalization are driving a constant need for faster production. Labeling equipment is one area that has felt the pressure from these trends, and the industry continues to innovate to provide beverage manufacturers with the fastest, most flexible machinery, experts say.
Packaging experts note that advancements in optical technology, software algorithms that are effective at high line speeds and the ability to inspect materials across the bottling process are essential for today’s modern bottling facilities.
Suppliers throughout the material handling supply chain descended upon Atlanta for MHI’s Modex 2016 tradeshow, which took place April 4-7 at the Georgia World Congress Center. Attendees from various industries, including food and beverage, also were present to learn about the latest trends and innovations that are shaping the supply chain.
Like the steady drops of rain drumming on a windowpane, the filling of beverages also dictates a steady pace to keep the production line running smoothly. However, it is imperative that the correct filler is used.
After being carefully set in a line, when a single domino is knocked over into the next, the entire line will fall. Similar to the cascading effect of falling dominos, changes within the front-end of beverage operations often will cascade through the manufacturing facility all the way to the end-of-line operations, even to case packing and wrapping.
Thirty-eight percent of consumers prefer aluminum cans when tailgating versus 26 percent who prefer plastic bottles. Thirty-six percent of consumers prefer cans at barbecues or picnics, compared with 30 percent who prefer plastic bottles.
In this video, Tree Top, an agricultural cooperative with eight processing facilities, installed robotics to its packaging line. Director of Engineering Andy Juarez discusses how robotics helped improve the packaging lines and what challenges come with adding automation to their facilities.
As beverage manufacturers and contract packaging companies see more SKUs entering the warehouse, operations professionals are tasked with ensuring that all processes are operating efficiently and effectively.