Modular system adds flexibility for food producers

GEA has announced the launch of its new SmartPacker TwinTube vertical packaging machine onto the UK market.

The firm explained that the machine has been redesigned as a ‘future-proof’ modular system. The updated version is said to reduce operational costs and energy use thanks to ‘sealing technology advances’. Plastic as well as functional paper can be used for bag production.

The TwinTube is a continuous motion vertical machine, suitable for packaging small-sized food products such as confectionery, dried fruits and nuts. GEA added that the machine is part of a ‘complete packaging process’ with upstream and downstream equipment operating in a dry manufacturing facility. It operates with two parallel forming tubes, achieving combined speeds of up to 500 bags per minute (weighing 10 to 18g each).

It is also possible to run a different film reel for each tube, meaning calorie packs of different widths or designs can be simultaneously filled. A new feature is the Jumbo Roll, which allows film reels of up to 100kg to be used for long production runs.

The modular construction allows customers to add new options and upgrade their machine, while the introduction of toolless adjustment features help achieve shorter change-over times.

Martijn van de Mortel, product manager, vertical packaging at GEA said, “With these new updates, GEA can meet customer demands in terms of automated process control, less operator dependence, more uptime and operational efficiency.”

The SmartPacker TwinTube is equipped with automated web tracking. This means that if the film deviates from its path, the feature will correct the direction of the film automatically.

Other features include a jaw closing mechanism, optimised heating unit and a vertical rotational seal unit.