Equipment Snapshot: For the first time ever, MECATHERM and ABI will exhibit together at the International Baking Industry Exposition (IBIE) from September 18 to 21 in Las Vegas, Western Hall – stand 2131. MECATHERM focuses on the design and manufacturing of automatic equipment and production lines for industrial bakeries and pastry and patisserie manufacturers. ABI is a North American bakery solutions provider, known for its bagel production equipment (make-up & baking) and its robotic and automation equipment solutions. MECATHERM and ABI are subsidiaries of TMG holding company.

Food manufacturers have many challenges to tackle such as labor shortages, inflation, and supply chain tension. Simultaneously, they continue to have demanding expectations in regard to product quality, industrial performance, and sustainability. At IBIE, MECATHERM and ABI will jointly showcase its solutions to support industrial bakeries in addressing these challenges.

In current climate, anticipation and adaptation have become essential. At IBIE, MECATHERM will introduce M-Care, an intuitive predictive maintenance application that enables industrial bakeries to detect anomalies (detection of drifts) in equipment early, prevent breakdowns, and provide operators and maintenance staff guidance for initial maintenance checks. Visitors can see demonstrations of this digital solution, available on tablets or smartphone. Most of the new MECATHERM ovens are already equipped with M-Care. This solution has been developed in partnership with the French company MaMaTa.

ABI will be highlighting its innovative vision system, a proprietary software designed for bakery manufacturing.  The platform gathers, compiles, and analyses visual data captured from a variety of sources such as 2D, 3D, or thermal. Then, the system processes it in real-time to provide robots with exceptional guidance. Using ABI’s vision platform, robotic scoring, dough and product handling, and packing are executed.

From vertical ovens to flexible automated lines, the range of MECATHERM solutions has increased in the recent years to better answer the challenges of a very demanding market. For instance, the MECAFLEX line, integrating the M-TA tunnel oven and the M-UB handling system, offers the ability to produce a wide range of products from different process combinations, with diverse baking tray types and formats. The objective: bring flexibility and easily adapt production to new and future consumers’ demand.

MECATHERM will also underline the interest of using vertical ovens. Indeed, as very compact, this type of oven is very easy to operate and enables to optimize footprint. The use of vertical ovens is also an interesting solution for manufacturers that want to optimize their energy usage, as energy losses during operation are minimal.

Visitors can also visit the MECABAGEL Line in a virtual reality experience. The line produces a wide variety of bagels of different sizes, shapes, and flavors. ABI and MECATHERM have combined years of their expertise to introduce this complete line solution in 2020.

ABI will feature a robotic scoring system with an automated tool changeover feature. Scoring blade options include ultrasonic drag, ultrasonic plunge, waterjet, or conventional multi-blade. The system quickly switches its tool depending on the complexity of the cut or on the final product.

In addition, MECATHERM plans to open a new Toronto office soon, where ABI is already located.

“In North America, MECATHERM’s clients can already have a dedicated local service team based in Atlanta, Georgia. To serve the entire region better, MECATHERM plans to open a new office in Toronto, Canada very soon. This new team will mainly be dedicated to services activities and will complement the existing team already in place at ABI in Toronto," says Raymond Nogael, vice-president marketing & business development of TMG.

Alex Kuperman, CEO of ABI LTD states: "Located in Toronto, Canada, ABI continues to be the ideal hub to serve the North American market. In addition to providing unparalleled support and service to our customers, we are the global leader in bagel processing equipment. We also offer a wide variety of robotic and automation solutions, including our new machine vision technology. These cutting-edge tools help bakeries optimize production, maximize flexibility, and help our customers adapt quickly to ever-changing market conditions.