MULTIVAC will be presenting its range of innovative processing and packaging solutions for the food industry at this year's Anuga FoodTec in Cologne. The focus will be on integrated lines, which enable the widest range of food products to be processed and packaged cost-effectively and sustainably. Other highlights will be a presentation of the company's digital products, as well as its services in the areas of packaging consultancy and after-sales care.

Some of the lines to be shown at the trade fair will be networked, so that they can be used with the digital MULTIVAC Smart Services, as well as being completely controlled from one point via MULTIVAC Line Control.

Meat and Alternative Proteins

Among the exhibits for the meat industry and manufacturers of alternative proteins, there will be a space-saving, high-output line for the automatic converging, infeeding, packaging and labelling of vegan burgers on a cardboard tray in a flowpack. A centrifuge converges the burgers into a single line on one transport conveyor, while the cardboard trays are denested onto another conveyor running in parallel. A handling module loads the burgers into the cardboard trays, which then run into the packaging machine, where they are packed under modified atmosphere. An inline labeler then applies a label from above to the packs. The flowpacking solution is particularly suitable for quick product changes, and one of its many features is its cost-effectiveness at high output. The use of very thin films and the absence of process-related film trim also contribute to the sustainability of this solution.

A high-output line with slicer and thermoforming packaging machine will also be presented as an example of the automatic slicing, infeeding, packaging and labelling of sliced vegan products. The product is first sliced by the slicer, which then sprays each slice with an interleaving agent (liquid interleaving). The individual portions are subsequently deposited onto a checkweigher. Portions with an incorrect weight are ejected by means of a rocker, so that the weight can be corrected manually. 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 then slide into the pack cavities during the machine advance. Thanks to the flat loading angle, the optimum loading results for the product are achieved. After the products have been packed under modified atmosphere, the MAP packs are labelled by cross web labelers on the top and base of the packs. Since modules such as the portion loading conveyor and cross web labelers are completely integrated into the packaging machine, the line offers the facility for optimizing the space requirement. Thanks to the use of the spray system known as MULTIVAC Sustainable Liquid Interleaving, it is not necessary to have paper or film as interleaves. The thermoforming packaging machine also enables the optimum packaging material consumption to be achieved.

A compact and highly flexible portioning line for fresh meat retail packs can also be seen at the trade fair, and this line features the automatic portioning, infeeding and packaging of the product. This inline solution includes a traysealer in the medium-output category. The portioning machine cuts the steaks and lays them in a shingled pattern on a transport conveyor. The trays are denested in parallel with this conveyor and placed onto a second transport conveyor.

Both conveyors converge just before the traysealer, and the portions slide into the trays. This single-track product flow of filled trays is then diverged into two tracks by a diverger, since the traysealer is designed as two-track. The trays are packed under modified atmosphere in the packaging machine. The new and compact portioning machine, which was specially developed for the entry-level sector, ensures that the best portioning quality and optimum yield are achieved for the product. Sustainable packaging materials, such as mono films or MULTIVAC PaperBoard, can be used on the traysealer.

Fresh Produce

The company will be showing a compact, high-output tray packaging line for fruit and vegetables in a protective grip pack, which is made of sustainable material and labeled inline. A filled tray is placed on the transport conveyor, before being sealed in the traysealer and then labeled from above. This solution offers simple operation of all line components at one control terminal. The tray made of cellulose is biologically degradable, and this also contributes to the sustainability of the packaging solution.

Convenience Foods

When it comes to packaging snacks in vacuum or MAP packs, MULTIVAC will be showing a compact, high-output thermoforming packaging machine, which features a high level of flexibility, output and pack quality, as well as price-to-performance ratio. The packaging machine is equipped with a direct web printer for best-before date, and this is integrated into the machine control, so that operation is very simple.

Full Wrap Labeling with Weigh Price Marking

At Anuga FoodTec MULTIVAC will be presenting a new conveyor belt labeler, which not only provides attractive full wrap labelling of packs, but now also enables weigh price marking to be performed in one process on the same machine. The labelling system features a very precise level of calibrated weight measurement, and it is available as an option with integrated label and print inspection. The conveyor belt labeler can be used as a stand-alone solution or part of an automated line.

Processing of Bakery Products

The PDU system (Product Decoration Unit) from FRITSCH for decorating bread rolls will be shown at the trade fair, and this enables individual decoration patterns to be pressed or cut precisely into the surface of the product.

Modernization of Existing Machines

MULTIVAC will be presenting its MULTIVAC Retrofit modernization service, using a thermoforming packaging machine from a previous generation, which has been converted to the current technology and equipped with additional functions to meet the tasks and market demands of today. This means that the service life of an existing machine can be extended and its efficiency increased. 

Live Demonstration: TVI Portioning Solutions

By visiting a tent in the outside grounds, customers will be able to convince themselves of the benefits of the new TVI portioning machine, which was designed primarily for medium-sized butcher's shops, industrial-scale meat processors with smaller lines, as well as wholesale businesses, which supply restaurants, caterers or canteens with portioned meat products.