Ishida Europe has developed a versatile mix-weighing solution for Benelux frozen snacks market leader Ad van Geloven for the introduction of a new product range in the important savoury snacks market.
In many European countries, frozen snacks that can be heated in minutes in an oven, frying pan or air-fryer are very popular as appetisers and for meeting unexpected demand from family or guests. Ad van Geloven has now introduced ‘Funmix’ under its well-known Mora brand, a range of mixed snacks that offer consumers the added value of variety within a single pack.
The product is packed in an attractive stand-up bag to create maximum impact in glass-fronted freezer cabinets. For consumer convenience, the bag is also resealable. In order to ensure that every pack contains the same number of each variety – the 426g bag, for example, features six pieces of four different products – the company selected an Ishida multihead weigher in a four mix version.
At the same time, as well as delivering the new Mora mixture range into two different types of bag, the weigher also needed to be able to handle single products at high speed and have the facility to weigh mixtures of the company’s other brands into windowed boxes.
The Ishida solution adopted at Ad van Geloven’s Tilburg factory is based around the company’s 20-head advanced R Series weigher. In addition to the weigher, the work carried out or supervised by Ishida included gantry construction, conveyors and a feed system to deliver product from the existing flow freezer.
In its mix-weighing set up, each section of the machine acts as an individual weigher, allowing the different items in the mix to be given a specific target weight to ensure that the final product contains exactly the right proportion.
The new line also meets every demand in terms of versatility. In order to change pack formats, for example, operators roll the bagmaker forward about a metre, enabling the weigher to fill the windowed boxes instead of bags.
Fast cleaning of the feeding and weighing equipment requires washdown with water. The installation was therefore designed so that the junctions between the upper levels and the bagmaker can be sealed off with watertight covers.
Ishida collaborated closely with the bagmaker manufacturer and other suppliers in order to ensure that the entire line was up and running within two weeks.
"All parties worked during the summer holiday period in order to ensure that our production was not disrupted," explains Albert van der Vliet, head of technical services.
"We saw a market opportunity and both the equipment and the service from Ishida helped us to exploit it," he concludes.