Rotech cracks cost, speed and waste packaging coding challenges at Empack 2017

RF-Lite website
Leading UK coding and feeding specialist Rotech Machines will be exhibiting two exciting additions to its range at Empack 2017, highlighting how food SMEs can tackle cost, speed of coding and waste without compromising on packaging shelf appeal.

Headline products on show will include a new offline coder dedicated to pouches - the RF1-V+ - Rotech’s newest pouch feeding and coding system that can personalise codes at TWICE the speed of its predecessor, PLUS the compact, low-cost, RF-Lite offline date marking system, ideal for artisan and SME food producers.

With stand up pouches one of the fastest growing flexible packaging formats for food manufacturers, Rotech has answered calls for an offline coding machine that runs continuously without stopping or starting. By utilising vacuum pick and place technology and an innovative shingling infeed conveyor, the RF1-V+ smoothly picks a pouch from a stack, places it onto a conveyor for printing, and transfers the printed pouch neatly onto another stack for collection. The result: reliable coding of pouches, including those featuring zippers and sliders, at speeds of 80 a minute.

The RF1-V+ can print product descriptions, nutritional data, ingredient lists, multiple languages, as well as bar codes, date codes or batch codes, ensuring compliance with EU labelling regulations.

Faster pouch coding can be accomplished with the addition of a second shingling conveyor at the outfeed, while the larger capacity hopper can now hold up to 300 pouches, reducing the frequency of replenishing the system, resulting in even less machine downtime.
running bags“Research suggests that by 2018, flexible packaging will have overtaken rigid packaging*, with 786,095 million units being produced annually,” says Rotech director Chris Baker. “By coding pouches offline in flat form, manufacturers can overcome issues of coding awkward hard to reach pack corners or when it’s difficult to present the pack squarely and consistently to the coding device.”

To assist start-up businesses, in particular the high volumes of successful SME food producers, Rotech’s RF-Lite is an ideal entry-level solution for printing ‘watchstrap’-style cardboard sleeves. As well as suiting businesses looking to automate their offline date marking process for the first time, larger operators that require multiple date marking systems for multiple products and short production runs will also benefit from this low-cost system.

“Packaging waste remains a key target within the food sector and wraparound sleeves are increasingly getting smaller and thinner,” notes Chris. “Card wraparounds can also be easily recycled by consumers, so these sleeves are popular with retailers and suppliers for creating shelf appeal. Yet, printing legible date codes in the right place when sleeves come in different shapes and sizes present a challenge.” The RF-Lite can handle sleeve shapes and sizes ranging anywhere from 40x70mm to 300x200mm.

At Empack 2017, Rotech will show how the RF-Lite overcomes these various challenges, especially how the hopper separates thinner, lighter sleeve materials prevalent in today’s food packaging environment.

Discover how your operation can stay ahead of the pouch and packaging coding curve at Empack, Stand E3, 1 and 2 March 2017, NEC Birmingham.