Following a recent investment in the process and filling side for pet food trays, the pressure was building to reduce costs and increase throughput on their packaging line.
The secrets of Cama’ success: high-technology, reliability and winning innovative solutions. (video: Cama)
Pet food packaging line: a fast growing petfood manufacturer in the UK with a reputation for high quality wet petfood achieves successful sales growth in global export markets.
Different packaging formats, the request for pet food packaging line
The company’s problem was that their customer’s wanted standard single unit items and increasingly multi-pack, multi-flavour packaging; two very different packaging formats. Their existing equipment was slow and the process for the complete range of products required a lot of manual labour.
The brief to Cama was to provide a solution that could provide sleeved single trays in Display cases for single unit purchases and also the multi-pack variants, with up to four different flavours, in a consumer friendly take home box. This flexibility is further extended to cope with different tray and pot sizes ranging from 85 g to 400 g.
Full turn key system with experience in providing packaging machines
With Cama’s decades of experience providing packaging machines and having an in-house packaging design team, Cama was able to propose a concept incorporating box forming and loading, sleeving, case packing, bundling and palletising to create a full, turn-key system.
Working with their partners, Cama was able to integrate inkjet coding, print and apply labelling and bar code scanning to ensure the whole system met with the customers’ need to adhere to regulatory requirements for labelling and traceability of meat products.
The key to flexibility, running at 200 trays per minute
The key to flexibility of the line is Cama’s vision driven IG delta robot cell incorporating 4x Triaflex robots which take product arriving in four lanes and either load the infeed of the sleeving machine for single unit sales OR load directly into a take home box.
All products are capable of running at 200 trays per minute. When running multi-flavour the infeed lanes are allocated to a specific flavour and the relevant box configuration is packed by the robots as the boxes travel through the IG loading unit.
Flexibility the total key with Industry 4.0 and IIoT initiatives
This installation adds to Cama’s already impressive list of references in the Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) and petfood industries, including multi-variety product packaging applications.
Flexibility is totally key, combined with shelf-ready cases and high line output. Cama can also easily address any Industry 4.0 and IIoT initiatives, as the control solutions the company deploys offer seamless connection to plant-wide systems.
The ongoing software and AI development tools are allowing Cama to strengthen the design capabilities – and to make life easier for the customers – by working on virtual commissioning and digital/virtual twins.
Robust cybersecurity is built in to the own software and control applications that communicate with higher level control systems ensuring only a trusted device is ever connected to the network.
The Cama’s FA21 forming unit
The consumer boxes are formed on Cama’s FA21 forming unit, with the lids left open and pass to the loading for top loading by the robots before being closed, using hotmelt glue, on a versatile CD56 top flap closing machine.
Smaller boxes are collated and shrink wrap bundled before palletising, large cases a fed directly to the palletiser.
When running sleeved products, the four infeed lanes are all the same flavour and the robots load the trays directly on the flighted infeed conveyor for the high-speed Cama MP91 sleeving machine.
A close coupled Cama FW748 wraparound case packer, receives the products at 200 trays per minute and packs into Shelf Ready (SRP) wraparound display cases.
Pet food packaging: great esperience and incredibly positive reaction
As a result of the investment Petfood manufacturer is now able to pack more than three times as much product per day, utilising fewer people, and therefore reducing the reliance of temporary workers. The greater efficiency gained from the investment will allow Return on Investment (ROI) within 2 years.
Cama’s machines are seeing an incredibly positive reaction from many different markets, due to their flexibility, positive handling and high efficiency levels.
Thanks to highly capable robotics and advanced automation solutions, they are Industry 4.0 ready and will comfortably fit into any smart-manufacturing environment. And with a standardised solution, the end user will realise multiple benefits, not just those in terms of operational performance.
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