Page 96 - Food&Drink magazine November-December 2022
P. 96

                Pack Expo Chicago draws huge crowds with innovation showcase
Pack Expo returned to Chicago on 23-26 October after a four-year hiatus, bigger and better than ever. Over 44,000 visitors had the chance to see more than 2000 exhibits. Packaging journalist John Henry dropped by the stands of some APPMA members.
The show opened its doors with the industry ready to do business after years of consistent growth, according to show owner and producer PMMI, The Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies.
“The success of Pack Expo is a testament to our industry’s continued growth as well as PMMI’s commitment to bringing the industry together to share cutting-edge innovations,” says Jim Pittas, president and CEO, PMMI. “No other event this year showcased so many end-to-end solutions, offering attendees everything they need to compete in a changing marketplace.”
Industry growth translated into buyers coming in significant numbers, ready to see the latest packaging materials as well as technology in action.
Improving operations, reaching sustainability goals, and checking out new innovations are just a few of the drivers that brought consumer packaged goods and life sciences companies to Pack Expo International. The buzz on the show floor confirmed that exhibitors and attendees from companies of all sizes found a rewarding, and some claim unparalleled, experience at the four-day event.
Heat and Control
Heat and Control, with manufacturing facilities in Brisbane, showed their line of food processing and packaging equipment. Pride of place went to its new continuous air fryer. Heat and Control’s air fryer allows cooking of products from chicken nuggets to egg rolls replicating the texture of traditional submerged oil frying without all the oil – enabling the manufacture a much healthier product, the company says.
Heat and Control has been a long-time partner with Ishida. Along with food processing equipment, it showed Ishida’s complete line of inspection equipment including X-ray, check-weighing and metal detection. Also on display were the latest in combining scales and vertical form-fill-seal baggers.
Sydney-based Tronics (part of Aldus Tronics) showed off its line of label applicating machines. Machines on display included several fully integrated labellers, a low-cost but high-performance wrap labeller and a stand-alone side or top labeller. The Model S4 labeller has the capability to apply front
and back panel labels or wraparound labels at speeds up to 150ppm.
Tronics has long been known for ease of making electronic adjustments on-the-fly. Now the company has taken it a step further with its touchscreen HMI. Once a product/label combination has been determined for the first time, settings are stored in the HMI. The next time the product is run, a simple touch re- establishes the settings. This saves time in setup and mistake-proofs the setup.
tna solutions
Another Australian manufacturer, tna solutions, is known worldwide for its food processing and packaging systems. It supplies and integrates complete lines from initial processing and cooking to final packaging, making it a single-source provider.
Two interesting services that tna offers its customers are virtual and augmented reality. Its virtual reality system allows engineers and clients around the world to visit a proposed line virtually. They can check dimensions and interferences and collaborate in real time. This allows the design to be fine-
 Ishida inspection equipment on Heat and Control stand.

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