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French fries production
Energy savings with freezer control system

French fry processing at Bergia Frites, The Netherlands – automatically controlling and monitoring the product’s frozen condition at the freezer exit via sensor with the award-winning Callifreeze system. Gea Bergi
French fry processing at Bergia Frites, The Netherlands – automatically controlling and monitoring the product’s frozen condition at the freezer exit via sensor with the award-winning Callifreeze system. (Picture: Gea/Bergia)

Gea has recently concluded tests proving the effectiveness of its award-winning Callifreeze system which improves product quality and provides energy savings by automatically controlling and monitoring the condition of frozen products as they exit the freezer. Because Callifreeze uses Aquantis sensors, frozen food processors can ensure accurate product quality control and avoid product wastage. The system calibrates freezer parameters through the continuous measurement of a product’s level of frozenness (Lof). This allows retention time, air temperature and fan speed to be controlled so that the required and precise level of freezing can be achieved with minimum energy consumption. To-date, Callifreeze is the world’s first in-line system to autonomously monitor and control frozen product quality in this manner, helping Gea customers meet their Industry 4.0 strategies as well as their environmental targets.

Tests on different french fries varieties

The Callifreeze tests, which took place in January 2019 at Bergia Frites, a market-leading french fry manufacturer in Roermond, The Netherlands, were performed on 7mm x 7mm shoestring, 9mm x 9mm straight-cut and 13mm x 13mm crinkle-cut fries. The results prove that savings can be achieved when freezing french fries by increasing the evaporating temperature and via the continuous monitoring and control of the Lof conditions according to quality targets.

Automatic setting of the optimum evaporation temperature

The Callifreeze system was installed at the exit of the Gea Iqf tunnel freezer to continuously monitor the Lof. The technology was able to measure the percentage of frozen water in a 80 to 120mm product layer conveyed from the freezer to the packing area. The evaporating temperature of the CO2 refrigeration installation, also provided by the company, was controlled according to optimized settings defined by the Callifreeze system.

The results show that crinkle-cut fries are sufficiently frozen when the evaporation temperature is increased by 3 degrees Celsius (-33 C to -30 C) with the original retention time. For 7mm x 7mm straight-cut fries, the evaporation temperature could be increased by 5 degrees Celsius, which represents a 15% energy savings in refrigeration supply, without a reduction in Lof.

Taking into account the ability to increase the evaporation temperature by 3 C for crinkle-cut fries, for example, the reduced energy usage would result in savings of roughly € 41,000 per year, for a company operating a 10 tones/hour plant, without affecting product quality. This would mean a 18-month Return on Investment (Roi) period for the Callifreeze equipment; for larger plants the savings would be even greater and the Roi much quicker. This level of energy reduction represents an important contribution to the sustainability of a plant and can make a significant contribution in reducing industry’s overall energy usage if applied globally.

It was also demonstrated that product Lof variation followed the same trend as product temperature. With continuous measurement and logging of product Lof, and the correlation between Lof and temperature, Callifreeze was shown to provide a solution for in-line product quality tracking. This significantly reduces the product waste often associated with batch systems operating via manual control.

► Fachpack Conveying & Filling, Packaging, Labeling & Storage

Vision of the future
Efficient and sustainable packaging solutions

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Efficient and sustainable packaging solutions with a vision of the future Multivac
Picture: Multivac

At Fachpack 2019 Multivac will be showing a number of forward-looking innovations from its various business units. The exhibits include the new X-line machine generation, which will be presented at the trade fair in the form of the RX 4.0 thermoforming packaging machine and the TX 710 traysealer. Another focus of the trade fair will be concepts for sustainable packaging. These meet the current demands for recyclability and for minimisation of plastic consumption in the production of packs. The company’s presence at the trade fair is rounded off with a presentation of its labelling and marking innovations, including a new generation of cross web labellers and new direct web printers, as well as a solution for efficient wrap-around labelling of packs (full-wrap labelling).

Multivac has expanded its X-line machine generation with the addition of a further future-proofed model, the new TX 710 traysealer. The features of this traysealer are a robust machine concept and an intelligent control system, which together provide the maximum flexibility, output and reliability. In Nuremberg the TX 710 will be the centrepiece of a fully automated packaging line, which also includes a L 310 conveyor belt labeller for the attractive wrap-around labelling of packs (full-wrap labelling).

A second packaging line will have at its heart the RX 4.0 thermoforming packaging machine, which features a range of innovative technology. Thanks to its comprehensive sensor system and seamless digitalisation, it creates a new dimension, when it comes to packaging reliability, quality and performance. At Fachpack the RX 4.0 will be equipped with a new generation of cross web labeller, which gives even greater labelling accuracy at an even higher level of output.

Another of the company’s themes at the trade fair is the presentation of sustainable packaging solutions. On display will be a wide range of concepts, which contribute to reducing packaging material consumption in the production of packs, as well as other concepts for producing packs, which meet current requirements for recyclability. One example of this is the Paper Board range, which is made up of a wide variety of paper fibre-based materials for producing MAP and vacuum skin packs on thermoforming packaging machines and traysealers. This innovative packaging concept will be shown at the trade fair on the compact R 105 MF thermoforming packaging machine, an economic entry-level model for producing vacuum skin packs in small and medium-sized batches. The packs can be designed in such a way, that the end user is able to separate the cardboard backing from the plastic barrier layer and then put it into the paper recycling.

The fully automatic T 300 L traysealer is also a space-saving, entry-level model. The machine can be designed as multi-track and combined with various discharge systems. Thanks to the simple die change, it can quickly be converted for different pack sizes and shapes. All conventional trays from a wide range of materials can be run, as can pre-cut cardboard sheets.

Multivac at the Fachpack 2019: Hall 1, Stand 221

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Conveying & Filling, Packaging, Labeling & Storage Food & Beverage

Plant-based coating
New compostable double wall cup

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Huhtamaki has launched its new compostable Bioware Impresso double walled hot cup. Adding to Huhtamaki’s existing Bioware compostable range, this new cup in a mixed sleeve of white and green designs utilizes the unique Impresso bubble emboss which provides enhanced insulation and a tactile touch for the holder.

The cup utilizes sustainable 100% PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification) certified paperboard with a plant-based coating on the inside. As with all of Huhtamaki’s Impresso double wall cups, the innovative design means that the cup uses up to 25% less material than most other double and triple wall cups on the market. This reduces the weight of packaging without compromising on performance. These new cups are manufactured in the UK and are available for customers across Europe.

“We are experts in both cup design and manufacture, and our latest innovation, feel good, adds a compostable double wall cup to the Bioware range with our unique Impresso outer wrap that feels good to hold and provides enhanced insulation. The compostable Impresso has EN13432 certification which means that it is compostable at approved composting facilities”, says Becci Eplett, Marketing Manager, Huhtamaki Foodservice UK.

“The hot drinks market is extremely competitive and customers are looking for environmentally sound choices. For those with access to industrial composting Huhtamaki’s feel good Impresso cup is the ideal solution. Our new feel good Impresso cup offers the perfect solution for an operator to deliver an excellent drinking experience as well as a product that is made from PEFC paperboard, with a plant-based lining that is certified compostable”, Eplett continues.

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Conveying & Filling, Packaging, Labeling & Storage Food & Beverage Plant Construction, Engineering & Components

inspect product in-air
Digital sorters for wet-end vegetable processing

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Key Technology, a member of the Duravant family of operating companies, presents their most versatile Veryx belt-fed digital sorters, with specific design elements that benefit vegetable processors producing multiple products. Veryx is a belt-fed sorter that can inspect product entirely in-air with top and bottom sensors in order to detect and eliminate all foreign material (FM) and the right amount of product defects to make grade. Featuring Key’s unique recipe-driven operation, along with the ideal hardware and software to sort any number of different products, Veryx can be changed over to handle a new product in seconds. With sort recipes saved to memory for quick recall, Veryx eases use and ensures repeatable results to optimize product quality and maximize yield.

“Worldwide, many vegetable processors typically handle three or more seasonal products throughout the year to fully utilize their factories. In Europe, they might handle as many as 30 seasonal products. In these high changeover environments, processors need more production flexibility. With a multitude of successful Veryx installations, our recipe-driven operation is field proven to help customers achieve consistent sort performance so product quality is guaranteed day in and day out, regardless of personnel changes and across multiple lines and locations,” said Karel Van Velthoven, Advanced Inspection Systems Product Marketing Manager at Key. “Our expertise in vegetable sorting enables us to develop the most effective recipes. With a couple of taps on the touchscreen, an operator can retrieve a recipe saved to memory and accurately set Veryx to handle the next product.”

For processors of both canned and frozen vegetables that are sorting a variety of wet products prior to blanching, Key tailors each belt-fed Veryx with the ideal sensors, sensor positions, lighting, ejection system, product handling and software dedicated to the processor’s products and objectives. Capable of detecting color, size, shape and structural properties of every object, including the presence or absence of chlorophyll, Veryx removes insects, animal parts, paperboard, wood, rocks, plastics, glass and extraneous vegetative matter (EVM) such as weeds and other plant materials, as well as product defects. Veryx comes in different sizes to satisfy a range of production capacity requirements.

The next-generation 4-channel cameras and laser scanners available on Veryx offer twice the resolution of previous sensor technology. Optional Pixel Fusion combines pixel-level input from multiple cameras and laser sensors to produce higher contrasts and enable the most-difficult-to-detect FM and defects to be removed without false rejects. When configured with top- and bottom-mounted sensors, Veryx achieves all-sided surface inspection to maximize FM and defect detection. By positioning bottom-mounted sensors, along with light sources and backgrounds, away from product splatter, Veryx sustains full-surface inspection throughout the longest production cycles in the most demanding environments.

Essential for all processors, especially those handling a variety of different products, Key’s expertise in both sorting and product handling enables them to design the ideal integrated system for each application. Every system is customized to effectively present product to the sorter’s inspection zone, maximizing sort accuracy, with minimal mechanical changes. Application-specific infeeds and collection shakers can serve additional functions, like dewatering and mechanically screening out FM. Optional three-way sorting enables Veryx to optically separate good product into two grades while removing FM and defective product into a reject stream.

As the most advanced sorter on the market for data collection, Veryx can leverage Key’s powerful Information Analytics software, which allows users to analyze and share big data across their enterprise via an Opcua-compliant infrastructure at the same time they sort. Data about the sort process and about each and every object flowing through the sorter, whether the data is used to make sort decisions or not, is available to reveal patterns, trends and associations. This data can help a processor better manage incoming raw materials and optimize processes upstream and downstream of the sorter to achieve the next level in operational efficiency.

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