Spray system replaces film interleaves for sliced products

03-22-2022

Trade fair exhibit (AFT / IFFA 2022): MULTIVAC's Sustainable Liquid Interleaving spray system

Wolfertschwenden, 22 March 2022 - Greater efficiency, lower costs, less plastic and still the same taste and convenience: When MULTIVAC exhibits at the two leading trade fairs, Anuga FoodTec 2022 (Hall 8.1, Stand C010) and IFFA 2022 (Hall 11.1, Stand B11), it will be showing a future-proof solution for packing thinly sliced or very sticky sliced products as part of a slicer line. Thanks to MULTIVAC's innovative Sustainable Liquid Interleaving spray system, there is no requirement for the conventional interleaving film between the individual product slices, and the consumption of plastics during packing can therefore be reduced to the bare minimum.

This process has long been standard with bakery products and sweets. Now MULTIVAC is presenting a versatile spray system, which has been specially developed for packing sliced sausage, ham and cheese or vegan alternatives. The solution can even be used with wafer-thin cut portions (e.g. shaved meat), for which the classic interleaver is not suitable. The space-saving spray system can be easily integrated into new or existing slicer lines. The individual slices are presented very attractively in the pack. Above all however, the slices do not stick to each other, and they can be removed cleanly by the consumer.

 

The functioning principle is simple - and perfectly designed for the product

The precision nozzles on the new spray system atomise a liquid interleaving medium, which is both odourless and tasteless and can be tailored to the particular properties, e.g. fat content, of the sliced product. The interleaving medium is applied evenly to the underside of the slices. The taste, quality and shelf life of the product are not impaired.

The solution also however offers further benefits - particularly in terms of cost-effectiveness. “During our reference calculations, in which we simulated the slicing and packing of cheese, the typical film interleaves made of polystyrene generated total costs of around 3,800 euros per day. The daily costs for the interleaving liquid on the other hand amounted to only 425 euros - this equates to a saving of 85 percent,” explains Manfred Achenbach Senior Vice President of the Slicing Business Unit. The total time involved in refilling the interleaving liquid is up to 95 percent less than that for replenishing and threading the interleaver rolls. Other benefits of the spray system include: less storage space required, longer service life of slicer blades, and also less use of materials.

 

Trade fair exhibit

MULTIVAC will be showing the spray system at both trade fairs on a high-performance line featuring a slicer and thermoforming packaging machine. The modules for the automatic slicing, infeeding, packaging and labelling of the sliced product are integrated completely into one line, and they can all be operated efficiently and reliably from the HMI of the packaging machine or slicer thanks to the centralised MULTIVAC Line Control.

As part of the demo operation of the line, the product logs are sliced in multi-track format by the slicer, which also sprays each slice with the interleaving liquid. The individual portions are subsequently inspected on a checkweigher. Portions with the incorrect weight are ejected by means of a rocker for later weight correction by hand, while portions with the correct weight are conveyed onwards on a transport conveyor, before being grouped according to the format layout of the thermoforming packaging machine. The portions slide into the pack cavities during the advance, and the optimum loading results are achieved thanks to the flat loading angle. After the products have been packed under modified atmosphere, the MAP packs arrive at the cross web labellers, which apply the required labels to the top and base of the packs.

 

More added value

The technology has already been proven many times in practice. The spray system has been used successfully since 2018 on a MULTIVAC slicer at a dairy customer for interleaving cheese slices, and a ham producer uses this solution as well for extending the shelf life of his delicate products and intensifying their taste.

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