The latest form/fill/seal (FFS) systems are designed for versatility and are adaptable to many different bag types, film types, and bag sizes, which is good news for bakery and snack producers. They also incorporate improved sanitary design and can handle green sustainable materials such as paper packaging.
Bakery trays and similar items such as pallets and baskets are an essential part of the supply chain for bakery and snack producers in transporting finished goods for direct-store delivery. They are sometimes enabled with tracking and traceability technology such as radio-frequency identification (RFID) to prevent tray and pallet theft.
New robotic technology is helping to streamline and improve bakery and snack operations in both primary and secondary packaging applications. Areas of innovation include end-of-arm tooling (EOAT), sanitation, and space optimization. Gripper technology also is advancing to handle delicate products such as soft bakery items.
The latest product handling equipment, cartoners, case erectors and packers, loaders and palletizers, are designed to meet the needs of bakery and snack producers as well as consumers in a fast-changing marketplace. These flexible systems can run a large array of SKUs and they feature quick-change capabilities.
Variety is the spice of life when it comes potato chips. While classic chips still own the lion's share of the U.S. market, salty snack companies are offering new flavor combinations in a variety of packaging sizes. New flavors include spicy buffalo, hot BBQ and cauliflower, and many new offerings are gluten-free and Non-GMO Project verified.
Pizza is essential to a high percentage of Americans, a fact reflected in the over $6 billion annual sales for this market segment in frozen retail pizzas alone. While diversification of crusts and ingredients is attracting health-conscious consumers, there is still demand for high quality, Italian-style premium frozen pizza.
Sustainability initiatives are driving innovation in closing and bagging equipment, such as baggers, closers, twist ties, clips, zippers, resealable closures, heat sealing and ultrasonic sealing. As consumers become more eco-conscious, there is a strong demand to use packaging materials that are compostable, biodegradable, light-weighted, recyclable or made with recycled materials.
Sanitary design, high levels of accuracy, easy maintenance and smart technology are features of new ingredient packaging machines, which process snack and bakery ingredients such as spices, flour, grains, and sugar. The equipment also is compatible with sustainable packaging solutions.