IMA ILAPAK engineers energy and labour saving packaging solutions

Published: 4-Oct-2022

IMA ILAPAK will demonstrate how its suite of horizontal and vertical packaging machines is advancing to enable food producers to reduce their line-side labour requirement and energy bills and adapt to latest generation films

As well as applying digital servo technology across its entire portfolio, IMA ILAPAK has engineered a breakthrough automatic splicing system for its Vegatronic 6400HD (Hygienic Design) and long dwell sealing jaws that enable its Delta 3000 flow wrapper to run heat-sensitive mono-materials.

NEW: digital servo drives cut energy bills

In a move designed to help its customers keep energy costs in check, IMA ILAPAK has upgraded all of the machines in its portfolio to digital servo technology. The use of the very latest servo technology to power functions such as head height adjustment, infeed belts, jaw drives and film drives has dramatic impact in terms of energy efficiency as it reduces load on factory air conditioning units.

Tony McDonald, Sales and Marketing Director at ILAPAK UK, explains: “Conventional squirrel cage motors use fans to stop the machine from overheating, blowing hot air into the atmosphere. The factory air conditioning system then has to work extra hard to cool the hot air that is generated. This isn’t necessary with digital servo motors, which translates to huge energy savings for our customers.”

NEW: labour-saving automatic splicing on Vegatronic 6400HD

The IMA ILAPAK team will be on hand at PPMA to discuss the energy savings that can be achieved by upgrading to a digital servo platform, and to present the company’s latest labour-saving automation solutions. These include a game-changing automatic splicing feature on its newest continuous motion VFFS system, the Vegatronic 6400HD. Automatic splicing has always been a ‘pain point’ on baggers owing to the geometry in the forming tube. ILAPAK has overcome this challenge by designing a splicing process in which the films are angled in a way that guarantees successful splicing, thereby eliminating the need for manual reel changes.

The Vegatronic 6400HD was conceived to meet the growing expectations of the market in terms of sanitary design, accessibility, fast changeover and OEE (overall equipment effectiveness). Open frame design, IP66 rated electrical components, easily removable forming tube and a cantilever film reel shaft are among the features that combine to make the Vegatronic 6400HD the most efficient and hygienic bagger on the market today.

Delta 3000: at the core of an automated workflow

A Delta 3000 flow wrapper with automatic infeed will demonstrate how designing an automated workflow around the flow wrapping function can help companies to reduce near-line labour requirements whilst making efficiency gains.

“We are seeing an industry-wide shift towards integrated flow wrapping systems as a response to the ongoing labour crisis. Instead of buying stand-alone flow wrappers, food businesses of all sizes are looking at the fully automated solutions that used to be the preserve of very high speed operations. As part of the IMA Group and FLX HUB, we are ideally placed to implement turnkey solutions incorporating everything from infeed and outfeed automation, alignment systems, stackers, and buffers to case packaging and palletising,” says Tony.

With its heavy duty, hygienic design, the Delta 3000 is fast becoming the flow wrapper of choice for the fast-growing chilled sector, where it is used to pack everything from sandwiches, pies and cheese portions to fresh fruit & veg, meat, poultry and fish. IMA ILAPAK is currently experiencing particularly high demand from producers of sandwiches and hand-held snacks thanks to the Delta 3000’s ability to accommodate complex laminates, paper films and recyclable PE and PP mono-films with its long dwell sealing technology.

“The Delta 3000 has a long dwell sealing head which is capable of running films that a rotary sealing system simply cannot handle. Paper films are notoriously difficult to run on flow wrappers because of their structure - applying heat evenly and efficiently to achieve a hermetic seal is made difficult by the thermal insulating properties of the top paper layer. IMA ILAPAK has overcome this by deploying special geometry surface treated sealing jaws in conjunction with consolidated long dwell technology,” says Tony.

The long dwell sealing jaws and special surface treatments developed by IMA ILAPAK also enable the Delta 3000 to run heat-sensitive mono-materials at high speeds.

At the same time, the Delta 3000 meets the chilled food industry’s stringent hygiene requirements by enabling full wash down capability, even of the sealing elements. This has been achieved through full stainless steel execution, isolating the electrical cabinet from the main machine frame and smooth, sloping surfaces without recesses.

As well as food applications, the Delta 3000 is suited to non-food applications where a hermetically sealed pack is required, such as medical and personal care products like wet wipes.

IMA Record shows its Panda Red flow wrapper

IMA Record will show the Panda Red horizontal flow wrapping machine, a flexible machine that can find application in both food and non-food industries. This machine can be integrated with multiple automatic feeding systems offered by IMA Record and can be equipped with all the main options in order to deliver maximum performance. The Panda Red is available in the Bottom Seal version with rotating sealing jaws for a packaging speed up to 240ppm. The stainless steel chassis and the availability of washdown infeed match the level of sanitation required by the food industry, including IQF applications. 100% made in Italy, with a simple and intuitive HMI, Panda Red can be easily connected for remote assistance and to the local ERP network.

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