PMMI’s Pack Expo International Opens Sunday in Chicago

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Many of the 45,000-plus people attending Pack Expo International November 6-9, with the exception of Cleveland fans, will have something extra to celebrate in the Windy City. The Chicago Cubs won the Major League Baseball World Series on the early morning of November 3, defeating the Cleveland Indians 8-7 on the road after 10 long innings of play and a rain delay in the final game of a best of seven battle royal.

The victory marked the end 108-year drought. Indeed, the last time the Cubs won the championship was in 1908, when Teddy Roosevelt was President of the United States. Bully for Chicago!

Meanwhile, a significant number of the 2,100 exhibitors will be celebrating the introduction of new and upgraded equipment unveiled for more than 7,000 buyers from 130 countries to see in action on the buzzing show floor at McCormick Place. Occupying more nearly 1.2 million net square feet of space, the event is billed as the world’s largest processing and packaging fair.

The US packaging machinery market is estimated to be worth more than $10 billion. The food sector accounts for 37% of total value, followed by the beverage industry at 21.7%, according to the Association for Processing and Packaging Technology’s (PMMI) 2016 State of the Packaging Industry Report.

Founded in 1933, PMMI is the owner and producer of Pack Expo International. The trade association is made up of more than 700 member companies that manufacture packaging, processing and packaging-related converting machinery, commercially available packaging machinery components, containers and materials in the United States, Canada and Mexico.

From conveying lines to form, fill and seal machines, case sealers and much more, equipment essential to the global frozen food industry will be in high profile at Pack Expo International. A preview of some of the more innovative systems on display follows:

CPS 201 casepackerCPS Case Packing Systems’ CP 201 gravity case packer will hold forth at Booth E-10221. It has been specifically developed for horizontally packing frozen products in boxes at high speeds. Typical products include french fries, vegetables, meat and fish. Operating from a small footprint, the CP201 case packer is promoted as “capable of greater kg/m3 packing performance than any other machine.”

heat and control fastback platformIshida has launched the IX X-ray inspection series to assist food manufacturers and processors in complying with global safety standards and meet the demands of quality and safety-conscious retailers. All models offer exceptionally sensitive foreign body contaminant detection and additional benefits such as the ability to identify damaged and missing products or components, helping the food industry to achieve a rapid return on investment. It will be on display at the Heat and Control booth (N-4706).

Also spotlighted at the show by Heat and Control will be its FastBack, Spray Dynamics, and CEIA equipment. Visitors will see next generation technologies from FastBack with new models 260E G3, Revolution Gate 3.0, Blending System, and for the first time, the Cartridge Open Channel Support System.

Show goers can check out the latest conveying machine technology from Intralox at Booth S-2548. Its S7050 ARB system is designed to move the smallest, lightest, and widest range of package types at the fastest speeds. Reliable, soft handling operations significantly amplify throughput in turning, switching and laning applications over robotic solutions.

multi fillMulti-Fill Inc. will be on the scene meeting and greeting visitors at its stand (E-8103), where continuous improvements in systems will be front and center. The company’s newly redesigned MPFSC-120 automatic volumetric filler boasts enhanced operational efficiency, as well as improved sanitation and safety aspects. Among its new features are: separation of electrical and pneumatic components into two cabinets for additional safety; easier latch system, quick disassembly of the filling head, standardization of components, improved sanitary design of the filling head.

Where labor costs are of concern, food processors filling short goods can add a bulk feeder to the volumetric filler to reduce the amount of time that operators spend feeding the machine. The bulk feeder utilizes a first-in, first-out product flow, and automatically slows down or speeds up with the rest of the line.

Customers wanting to fill products such as fermented vegetables, fruit cocktail or pico de gallo stand to benefit by adding a liquid pump option to the volumetric filler. While not a sauce filler, the liquid pump collects liquid that is normally lost through the bottom of the conveyor and re-circulates it to the filling head, where it is dosed with the product into the container. If a drier product is desired, the liquid can be siphoned off and discarded altogether.

Multi-Fill is regarded worldwide as a leading manufacturer of volumetric filling systems for cooked pasta (long or short noodles), rice, cut fruits and vegetables, shredded meats, seafood pieces, gourmet pet foods and deli-type salads. Its equipment is known for being reliable, versatile, easy to clean, compact, cost effective, and long lasting with low maintenance requirements.

New J-Generation filling machines from Multipond are billed as “completely redefining the subject of hygiene.” The entire structural design of the equipment, from the proprietary hygienic screws to the machine frame to the rating plate, has been revamped and redeveloped to meet the toughest hygiene regulations worldwide. See it in action at Booth S-2888.

Triangle XYRJ 135The versatile Model XYRJ vertical form, fill and seal bagging machine from Triangle Package Machinery Co. is built to run a wide variety of bag styles, including three-sided seal, Doy, pillow and gusseted bags. A rotatable sealing jaw provides more flexibility than ever, allowing runs of multiple package styles on the same machine. The model is available with optional zipper applicator and ultrasonic cross seal and/or back seal. Check it out at Booth S-2430.

Bradman Lake carton closerBradman Lake will be in high profile during Pack Expo. Visitors to its S-1721 booth will see the debut of a newly developed machine addition, which is integrated into a complete primary and secondary packaging line. The equipment will be in action demonstrating wrapping, picking and placing products into top load cartons.

The exhibit of a fully automatic packaging system will highlight the latest design of the Flowtronic FT120 Flow Wrapper with Inline Phase Feeder. The FT120 sets the benchmark for horizontal form fill and seal flow wrapping machines and the ILPF is an innovative infeed system designed to form a queue of product and then to phase individual product into the infeed flights of the FT120 flow wrapper. It also controls the speed of the machines by monitoring the level of product presented to the wrapping leg.

Also seen will be the latest version of the VGR2000 Vision Guided Robotic Pick and Place loading system, which can be integrated with many packaging lines and load products into other Bradman Lake equipment such as wrappers, top load and end load cartoning machines and case packers.

While the FT120 Flow Wrapper and the VGR2000 Vision Guided Robotic Top Load System will demonstrate Bradman Lake capabilities for developing new packaging machinery technology, the 2/60 Single Head Carton Former and the RA60 Carton Closer will showcase its machine reconditioning program; to take machines built many years ago and upgrade them to meet current mechanical, electrical and safety specifications.

For more information, including a complete list of exhibitors at Pack Expo International, visit