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    18.10.2017   3rd European Food & Beverage Plastic Packaging Summit    ( Company news )

    Company news Circular Economy and Latest Technologies Leading the Industry

    Following two successful editions of ACI’s European Food & Beverage Plastic Packaging Summit, This 3rd edition will take place on the 14th & 15th March 2018 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. The event will bring together brand owners, retailers, leading sustainability experts, packaging converters and manufacturers, plastic collectors and reclaimers, policy makers and major global organisations involved in the Food & Beverage Plastic Packaging sector. This edition will create partnerships and cover the major concerns by debating with senior representative of the industry.

    This year, the conference focus will look at the best strategies for sustainable packaging including recycling and packaging performance, with a stronger focus on the brands and retailers, who will share their thoughts and information on consumer experience and demands for next generation of packaging.

    Furthermore, the conference will also explore the European Commission’s Circular Economy Package, and its impact in the entire supply chain dynamics. The event will look into the use of Bioplastics & Biodegradable & Compostable Plastics, as well as the latest innovations in the market for printing and labelling.
    (ACI London, UK, The Whitmore Group)
     
    17.10.2017   New customer portal e-connect goes live at Fakuma    ( Company news )

    Company news e-connect, the new customer portal of ENGEL, is due to be launched at Fakuma 2017. The portal will simplify and speed up communication between processors and ENGEL while providing an overview of the machinery, the processing status of service and support orders and the prices and availability of spare parts – any time, anywhere. The new version of the customer portal will also meet the current and future requirements of Industry 4.0.

    Picture: The fastest link to the world of ENGEL: the new version of the e-connect customer portal is even clearer. The platform supports all service products in ENGEL's inject 4.0 programme.

    e-connect provides fast access to the world of ENGEL. Between 17th and 21st October in Friedrichshafen, Germany, the injection moulding machine manufacturer and system solutions provider will demonstrate the new possibilities at its stand in hall A5. “In developing the new software, the aim was to provide customers with more specific information, establish contact with them even faster and provide the best possible support to meet the challenges of Industry 4.0,” points out Verena Paradeis, product manager for e-connect. “The customer portal will be the lynchpin for our partnerships with customers.”

    From the first order onwards, all machines and system solutions supplied by ENGEL are stored in the system, with the current status also shown. For the best possible overview, users can reproduce the structure of their individual machinery in the system and even assign production lines to different halls or departments online.

    No time to waste in support and service cases
    Making support and service enquiries online is not only convenient for users, but also speeds up order processing significantly. As soon as a customer makes a request, it is automatically forwarded to the service team so that they can start looking for the cause immediately. Since customers and service technicians use the same database, they have the same level of knowledge at all times. In many cases, the system history this contains makes it easier to find a solution. This is also why all new service orders are fully documented in e-connect. With sites on three continents, ENGEL ensures qualified service technicians from its regular workforce are available around the clock.

    Condition-based, predictive maintenance included
    In addition to online support and remote maintenance, the new version of e-connect supports predictive, condition-based maintenance. Under the name e-connect.monitor, ENGEL offers solutions for monitoring the condition of plasticising screws and spindles. The aim is to utilise the full lifespan of machine components while avoiding unscheduled system downtimes. To ensure this, sensors monitor the condition of components and residual life is calculated on the basis of mathematical models. While the condition of plasticising screws is determined in the course of regular servicing, spindles are subject to automatic online monitoring; in both cases, the results of the evaluation are stored in e-connect; they can be called up and processed by the customer at any time. In the long term, continual condition monitoring serves to optimise the moulding process while making it easier to identify causes of wear.

    e-connect.monitor is part of the inject 4.0 programme, which ENGEL uses to help clients meet the challenges of Industry 4.0 head-on. ENGEL will also integrate future service products for the smart factory into the customer portal. “We have structured the platform so that we can quickly implement further demands of advancing digitalisation,” says Paradeis.

    More clarity, simpler navigation
    In addition to new functions, e-connect now offers greater clarity and transparency and even simpler navigation. It provides users with a wealth of information, from product descriptions and event news to latest reports from the world of ENGEL and the details of contact persons. A calendar contains the dates of trade fairs and booked seminars, while ENGEL’s e-learning platform is just one click away via e-connect.

    The new e-connect version will be available for all customers in Germany, Austria, Switzerland and the United Kingdom from Fakuma 2017 onwards; it will be then extended to other countries in Europe and the USA.

    ENGEL at Fakuma 2017: hall A5, stand 5204
    (Engel Austria GmbH)
     
    16.10.2017   A retrofit solution for holistic system life-cycle management    ( Company news )

    Company news Valve specialist GEMÜ is expanding its CONEXO range to include a retrofit solution for existing systems, as well as a cloud connection.

    GEMÜ CONEXO is an innovative and holistic solution for life-cycle management of all types of systems. The system currently consists of valves that are equipped with RFID chips and a corresponding IT infrastructure.

    Thanks to serialization, every relevant valve component, such as the body, actuator or diaphragm, can be clearly traced and read at any time using the RFID reader – the CONEXO pen. The CONEXO app, which can be installed on mobile devices, not only facilitates and improves the "installation qualification" process, but also makes the maintenance process much more transparent and easier to document. The app actively guides the maintenance technician through the maintenance schedule and directly provides him with all the information assigned to the valve, such as test reports, testing documentation and maintenance histories. The CONEXO portal acts as a central element, helping to collect, manage and process data.

    Now the range is being expanded to include a retrofit solution. With CONEXO Retrofit, it is possible to retrofit GEMÜ valves in existing systems and to retrofit products from third-party providers with GEMÜ CONEXO, and to integrate these into the intended software environment. To identify the plant components, various options are available, depending on the requirements: Plastic shield with cable tie, adhesive labels for plastic components, and captive stainless steel seal.

    The product range is also supplemented by a cloud solution. This does not require local installation of the CONEXO portal. This type of connection facilitates network-independent access to data stored in the cloud from anywhere in the world.
    (GEMÜ Gebr. Müller Apparatebau GmbH & Co. KG)
     
    16.10.2017   ENGEL automation on show at Fakuma 2017    ( Company news )

    Company news At Fakuma 2017, which takes place in Friedrichshafen, Germany, from October 17th to 21st, ENGEL will showcase its expertise in automation at a special Expert Corner. On show, among others, will be the small e-pic B and e-pic Z robots – integrated and with expanded software functions –, the new viper 20 speed for high-speed medical and packaging applications and the new 10” hand-held touch terminal, which makes its exclusive world premiere at the Fakuma event.

    Picture: 30 percent faster than the conventional viper: the new viper 20 speed offers removal times of well under 1 second.

    Integrated e-pic robots
    At Fakuma 2017, ENGEL will present the integrated version of its e-pic robots for the first time, clearly illustrating how efficiency potential can be maximised by combining injection moulding machines and robots. Within the integrated solutions, the CC300 control unit for ENGEL injection moulding machines becomes the main operating panel of the whole manufacturing cell; this means uniform parts data and alarm management as well as a unified look and feel. Consistent operating logic significantly simplifies activation and programming as well as control of robots and the manufacturing cell as a whole.

    Integration is a key feature of ENGEL solutions. Since ENGEL supplies injection moulding machines and robots from a single source, the individual components of the manufacturing cell are seamless from a process control and mechanical viewpoint. Injection moulding machines, robots and other peripherals, such as conveyor belts, sprue chutes and protective covers, are coordinated in the design and arranged to be as space-saving as possible. Integrated manufacturing cells also ensure maximum security. A CE certificate will be obtained for the overall solution.

    Of course, all ENGEL robots can be integrated subsequently to injection moulding machines via the EUROMAP 67 interface, regardless of the machine brand. No modifications to the injection moulding machine are required to connect the e-pic robots.

    Efficiency control reduces energy consumption and wear
    e-pic robots, the latest products in ENGEL’s automation range, are offered in two versions: as linear pick-and-place robots (e-pic Z) and servo sprue pickers (e-pic B). The main feature of the e-pic series is the robots’ lightweight swivel arm in place of a conventional x-axis. This completely new kind of kinematic system – a USP of ENGEL – significantly increases the dynamism and energy efficiency, reduces maintenance effort and enables a highly space-saving installation on the injection moulding machine. The swivel arm requires less space than a linear axis when moving towards both the injection and clamping sides; it also works around obstacles, such as core pulls or slides, quickly and easily. Operating the e-pic robot is therefore no more complicated than operating a linear robot. The control unit converts rotary movements into linear movements.

    In a new development for Fakuma 2017, ENGEL will be equipping its e-pic robots with efficiency control. The robots use the software to adapt the speed of their movements to the injection moulding process, thereby reducing energy consumption and raising the lifespan of mechanical components. Efficiency control has been an established feature of viper linear robots for years.

    viper 20: now even faster
    There will also be a premiere for viper linear robots at Fakuma. The new viper 20 speed offers removal times of well under 1 second. The enhanced servo-electric drive technology and the reduced weight of the robot’s axes are responsible for the step up in performance. Developed for applications with total cycle times of around 4 seconds, the viper 20 speed is mainly used in the medical and packaging sectors, areas in which top-entry robots tend to offer very high flexibility.

    The new ENGEL viper 20 speed will demonstrate its impressive performance by handling cups at the Fakuma event. It will work in tandem with an ENGEL easix multi-axis robot that will take the cups from a moving conveyor belt and stack them.

    In this application, both robots – the viper linear and the easix multi-axis robot – are integrated into a CC300 control unit. It makes no difference whether the CC300 is controlling linear or rotary axes. The additional movement instructions for the multi-axis robot integrate seamlessly with the graphical interface, which simplifies operation significantly. To allow for simple and fast parameterisation despite the complexity of the overall system, the control unit provides different user levels, from a simple view to a fully object-oriented visualisation of the sequence.

    10” for easier operation
    Another highlight of ENGEL’s Automation Expert Corner will be the new 10” hand-held terminal C10 for robots in the ENGEL series; this will replace the 7” units in the C70 series in the year ahead. Visitors to Fakuma 2017 can look forward to an exclusive preview. The new hand-held terminal will provide a much clearer layout, simplifying operation considerably.

    ENGEL automation still growing strongly
    Injection moulding production is facing increasingly complex challenges owing to the pace of market development. Around the world, ENGEL is offering customers solutions that address the required degree of automation precisely, from standardised robot cells to made-to-measure system solutions. A consistent robot portfolio and the automation expertise of ENGEL specialists supply the basis for the high degree of flexibility. “In an ongoing project, we are integrating nine robots of different types,” says Walter Aumayr, head of the Automation and Peripherals division at ENGEL AUSTRIA. “Demand is rising for very complex automation cells to be used in highly integrated production processes.”

    To meet the individual requirements of processors and address the particular characteristics of its various national markets, ENGEL has its own automation centres in Austria and Germany as well as China, Korea and the USA. Of the 6,000 ENGEL employees around the world, more than 500 are devoted to automation technology – a number that will continue to rise. “We are hiring a lot of new employees for automation,” confirms Aumayr.

    Over the past five years ENGEL has doubled its turnover from automation projects; the area of special automation was developing especially strongly with growth rates of 30 percent on average. “The trend shows no sign of slowing down,” says Aumayr. “ENGEL automation will continue to achieve strong, double-digit growth rates.”
    ENGEL at Fakuma 2017: hall A5, stand 5204
    (Engel Austria GmbH)
     
    13.10.2017   Change perceptions at Labelexpo Europe: Saying luxury in more ways than ever    ( Company news )

    Company news The face value of a label is just one part of a consumer’s impression of a bottle or package. Communicating brand values effectively means going further – how does a label feel? What sound does it emit when touched? Does it give off a scent? Packaging that stimulates multiple senses has a bigger impact on consumers’ perceptions – and helps determine their purchasing decisions.

    Photo: The Avery Dennison Sensorial Collection gives designers a broad toolset to create soft, textured or patterned papers that can give a premium, vintage or artisanal feel.
    (Photo: Avery Dennison, PR367)

    “At the past Labelexpo, we premiered exclusive labelling materials that help brands to stand out on the shelf, creating unique customer experiences, and changing consumer perceptions,” says Ralph Olthoff, segment director wine & spirits.

    Building on its show theme of “Pioneering Change,” Avery Dennison leveraged this platform for showcasing several exciting advances, including:
    • Clear Hotmelt adhesive for chilled food packaging
    • Sensorial Collection for wine, spirits and craft beer
    • Black Collection for wine, spirits and craft beer
    • Label’Glass technology for wine, spirits, premium food and cosmetics
    Avery Dennison’s patented Clear Hotmelt adhesive offers a new alternative for chilled food applications.

    As demand increases in Europe for healthy and convenient chilled foods, so does the need for attractive, transparent and informative packaging. Chilled food applications in the temperature range 0-8 °C require the tack of a hotmelt adhesive, but traditional hotmelt adhesives tend to yellow and UV-hotmelt adhesives carry a price premium. Avery Dennison’s S 2045C Clear Hotmelt adhesive now enables clear labelling for chilled food applications without yellowing. The excellent ink anchorage at increased printing speeds now unlocks a high-quality, cost-effective solution that creates exciting design possibilities for chilled food applications.

    The Avery Dennison Sensorial Collection gives designers a broad toolset to create soft, textured or patterned papers that can give a premium, vintage or artisanal feel. These diverse label surfaces can give consumers subtle messages about a bottle’s contents while contributing to an outstanding visual impact. This product portfolio offers various effects, from wood to velvet – allowing brands to create unique label designs that engage multiple consumer senses.

    New, exclusive Label’Glass technology allows brands and bottle producers to simulate a glass embossing effect with a label. Decorating the bottle with an embossed label that looks like glass and feels like glass, helps to create a distinctive and premium brand image, while differentiating the bottle to stand out on the shelf among hundreds of other wine, spirits, luxury food or cosmetic bottles. This technology offers a perfect alternative to glass embossing, particularly for small production batches, thanks to low order quantities, fast shipping, cost efficiency and lead times.

    The Avery Dennison Black Collection offers unique ways to create truly distinctive label designs for wine, spirits and craft beer brands. The materials provide excellent shelf appeal with black labels without white edges, ranging from smooth to textured in different shades. These products also deliver improved operational efficiency to converters, by saving on both ink and press time, as there is no need to dual pass printing.
    (Avery Dennison Label and Packaging Materials Europe)
     
    13.10.2017   Why has there been an increase in Craft Beer consumption across the UK?     ( Company news )

    Company news This article will look at the increase in craft beers over the last few years and the reasons why consumers are preferring craft beers over standard beers. Craft beers are produced by small, independent and traditional breweries. More than a third of craft beer consumers are millennials which show’s how important the 18-35-year-old market is to the industry.

    Over the last few years, there has been a large increase in the opening of UK breweries. Breweries opened within the UK have risen by 8% to around 1,700 breweries. This is due to the popularity of craft beers. In addition to this, the craft beer industry has grown into roughly 6,000 outlets since 2016.

    Craft beer manufacturers have seen a large increase in the consumption of craft beer drinkers. The reasons why there has been an increase in craft beers are as follow:
    ·Beer drinkers are experimenting by trying out different flavoured craft beers. This is because consumers are getting bored of the same old beer taste.

    ·Retailers are also getting more craft beers on the shelves. In the last couple of years, craft beer has grown into 6,000 outlets. Manufacturers are also placing their craft beer products into cans and bottles to be sold within the store.

    ·Craft beers are becoming portable - Lots of craft beer manufacturers are putting their beers into cans and bottles allowing consumers to enjoy their favourite craft beer while on the go.

    It has been reported by an accountancy group that craft beer breweries are becoming increasingly profitable. Craft beer is the leading way in the surging popularity of artisan products and has pushed aside other brands in the high street bars and pubs.

    Join us at this years, Alcohol Innovation Congress conference in London where we will explore ingredients, how to effectively tap into emerging social trends through innovation and how to mitigate decreasing consumer spending, yet still will a few sessions on packaging due to changing needs and social movements. Register today to learn more.
    (Arena International Events Group)
     
    12.10.2017   Vanilla: Symrise Is Leading in Authenticity Verification    ( Company news )

    Company news - Isotope ratio mass spectrometry and magnetic resonance spectrometer utilized
    - Proof of authenticity: Customer requirements are being fulfilled

    Vanilla is the best-known and most popular flavor in the world and the second most expensive spice after saffron. The prices for real vanilla are currently at an all-time high. Customers pay 550 to 600 US dollars for one kilogram of black vanilla beans. That makes the spice even more valuable than silver.

    Vanilla extracts and isolated vanillin are also used as important flavor components in addition to the pods of the vanilla orchid themselves. Therefore, comprehensive quality controls are needed for products made from this plant. By employing these controls Symrise not only meets the increasing demand of customers for certification of authenticity but moreover it complies with national regulations in
    individual countries.

    Depending on the product and its position in the supply and value chain, different methods are used for quality control and to provide proof of authenticity. If plant material is being examined, for example, this can be done by DNA analysis. On the other hand, commercially used vanillin can be differentiated in terms of its origin and production method using isotope ratio mass spectrometry and magnetic resonance spectroscopy.

    Complying With Customer Needs
    Symrise has been using isotope ratio mass spectrometry (IRMS) already for many years to verify authenticity. Recently an extended IRMS-method was established to further enhance the process of differentiating quality levels of vanillin. Details on the complete approach have been published by Symrise in the Flavour and Fragrance Journal: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/ffj.3379/full

    After integration of all available spectroscopic data using a statistical approach the results enable a significantly improved differentiation of the vanillin based on critical provenances. This allows vanillin that was produced naturally from eugenol to be differentiated from synthetic vanillin derived from lignin or curcumin, for example. This approach highly improves the quality and authenticity verification for vanilla products and sets new standards, through which the needs of Symrise customers can be met in this discerning market segment both now and in the future.

    Symrise is focusing on sustainability with its vanilla production in Madagascar. The company works with roughly 7,000 small-scale farmers in the fertile SAVA region, sourcing the spice directly from these farmers. The result is a sustainable and fully integrated supply chain. Beyond that, the fragrance and flavoring manufacturer helps the farmers improve their cultivation methods and thereby also improve their living conditions.
    (Symrise AG)
     
    11.10.2017   Unique removable self-adhesive labels digitally produced by Label'Or on Xeikon presses for...     ( Company news )

    Company news ... Belgian abbey brewery Val-Dieu

    After thorough research and development, Belgian label specialist Label’Or, now digitally produces the high quality, wash off labels for all Val-Dieu beer bottles, a unique solution in the beer industry.

    Alain Pinckaers, Director of Val-Dieu Brewery, explains: “To keep up with the growing demand for our beers, we needed to change our production process. As part of this, we decided to change the labels on our bottles. Where before we used wet-glue labels, we now switched to self-adhesive labels. As the bottles are washed and re-used, it was vital that the labels are easily removed. We worked closed with Label’Or who helped us find a solution and choose a suitable machine removable label.”

    Jean-Marie Peters, owner of Label‘Or, continues: “For the improvement of the production process, we looked at enhancing the brand image and presentation of the bottles. It was also very important to have washable labels, because of the switch to self-adhesive labels. We did a lot of research and testing, also working closely with paper suppliers, and finally found the solution. The rest just comes down to proximity, service, availability and short-runs.”

    Next to the traditional production process, Label’Or also produces labels digitally on Xeikon presses. “After the necessary preparations, the files are sent to the Xeikon front-end, and then produced on the Xeikon CX3 which prints most of the Val-Dieu labels. Not only do we print four or five different colours, we also add a coating. Afterwards the large reels, which sometimes carry 2.000 metres of paper, are sent to the roll slitting and rewinding machine, where the labels are cut and wound on reels for the labelling machine,” Peters explains. “Xeikon’s digital presses allow us to respond adequately to market needs for several reasons. First, because of the outstanding printing quality and secondly because of the dry toner that allows for direct or indirect contact with food. With the short turn-around time and maximum use of the press in one shift, we can react swiftly and offer the client a fast service. And that is what’s expected today: quality and fast delivery.”

    Family-owned Label’Or started working with Xeikon in 2008 when the Xeikon 3300 5-color digital press was installed. The company quickly understood the potential offers by combining the efficiency of their traditional production with the flexibility of digital. Using the new technology, it could effectively meet the demand for small runs and variable output. The quick return-on-investment made it possible to invest in a second Xeikon 3300, followed by a third, the Xeikon CX3.
    (Xeikon Manufacturing and R&D Center)
     
    10.10.2017   HELPING MANUFACTURERS IMPROVE PERFORMANCE WHILE LOWERING ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT    ( Company news )

    Company news To enable producers in today’s packaging industry to meet the needs of consumers and to cope with the challenges posed by value chains, equipment performance is critical. Successfully launched at Drinktec 2017, the world’s leading trade fair for the beverage and liquid food industry, the OptiFeed® crown feeder and the EvoFilm™ shrink-wrapping system are two new solutions from Gebo Cermex that boost reliable and flexible production, at improved speeds, while reducing environmental footprint and lowering total cost of ownership (TCO).

    OptiFeed
    The first new solution is the durable OptiFeed crown feeder, delivering reliable, high-speed performance in a compact space. Developed for the glass market and building on the global success of Gebo Cermex cap-feeder solutions - currently totalling 1,400 installations worldwide – this new crown feeder platform ensures quality and compliance of crowns. Even at speeds as high as 81,000 crowns per hour, its integrated vision device allows unsuitable crowns to be spotted and seamlessly ejected, without stopping the flow.

    Throughout the development of the OptiFeed solution, sustainability was high on the agenda of the design team. As a result, the solution removes the need for air and thereby eliminates the risk of contamination that can sometimes occur when it is used. Instead, mechanical discharge moves the crowns, keeping electrical power consumption to under 1kW. This creates a smooth handling process as well as improving hygiene and reducing the environmental impact of the process.

    The OptiFeed crown feeder features a smart design with the option of right or left discharge at variable heights from 2.0 up to 6.2 metres to give manufacturers full flexibility. The solution’s small footprint and modular design allow for fast and easy integration, with optimum ergonomics ensured by a user-friendly Human Machine Interface (HMI) and full accessibility from ground level. In addition, to help meet health and safety at work requirements, the noise level is lower than the 80dB threshold at which hearing protection is required.

    EvoFilm
    Another world premiere at Drinktec 2017 is the Gebo Cermex EvoFilm, a robust, flexible, highly compact and energy-efficient shrink-wrapping system. Drawing on the company’s 50 years of experience with secondary packaging and end-of-line solutions, it delivers quality packs while meeting today’s challenges of customisation and sustainability. Developed for the very demanding high-speed production segment, this solution integrates a gentle product infeed and optimised transfer zones, key features when reaching impressive production speeds of up to 150 cycles per minute in three lanes. Its extensive primary and secondary packaging capability, precise film-handling process and fully automatic changeovers that only take five minutes, make it possible to produce multiple configurations of SKU (Stock Keeping Unit) while reducing downtime. Yet, high performance and flexibility are not achieved by sacrificing ease of use. For instance, in order to ensure fast access for cleaning and maintenance, the film vacuum table is fully extractible while the greasing system and the lubrication of chains are both automatic. To make them easy to replace without the need for reprogramming, all motion components are ‘plug & play’.

    To help producers minimise their environmental footprint, the compact EvoFilm is equipped with a new, lightweight version of the shrink-tunnel belt. Via its tunnel energy mode and infeed/outfeed tunnel flaps, it can significantly reduce energy consumption in cases of longer stoppages (a 15-minute stoppage can result in energy savings of up to 40%). In addition, because energy costs vary throughout the world, manufacturers from certain regions can enjoy further cost benefits when the shrink tunnel is powered by gas. This highly reliable and safe technology has a far shorter warm-up time than its electrical counterpart and the savings possible can be estimated in advance using the Gebo Cermex energy consumption simulation tool.

    EvoFilm offers a number of new technologies and smart tools to enable connectivity, data management and analysis. Via tutorials and interactive content, its brand-new, user-friendly and intuitive HMI makes trouble-shooting easy. For rapid and reliable recovery, it also features remote video access with augmented reality and, to optimise equipment performance over time, an Equipment Smart Monitoring (ESM) programme. This all results in better machine operability, minimal downtime and high levels of profitability.
    (Gebo Cermex)
     
    10.10.2017   Romania: Beer market up more than 2% in January-July this year    ( E-malt.com )

    The Romanian Beer Association reported a growth by over 2 percent in volume of the beer market in the first seven months of the year, compared with the same period of 2016, the Business Review reported on September 27.

    “The beer evolution during January-July was a positive one, but moderate,” said Julia Leferman, general director of the Romanian Beer Association.

    The beer sector has an important role in the development of the Romanian economy, with locally produced beer accounting for more than 97 percent of the total volume of beer consumed in the country, and the usage of ingredients from the local agriculture accounting for 70 percent.

    Leferman added: “To buy a litre of beer, a Romanian has to work 22 minutes, while a German needs to work only 8 minutes and a Dutch 9 minutes. The intervention of an unpredictable economic factor can increase this gap anytime, with negative consequences on the entire chain connected to the beer production: agriculture, HoReCa, retail, transports, packaging industry.”

    The beer sector creates 85,000 direct and indirect jobs in Romania, it is reported.
     
    09.10.2017   Elopak has launched a new robotic system for its aseptic filling platform E-PS120A    ( Company news )

    Company news Enhanced productivity and competitiveness

    Thanks to a fully autonomous robotic system, depalletization and opening of the outer packaging as well as transport into the filling machine are now all automatic. These operations until now had to be carried out manually, mostly by the machine operators.

    Just like the filling machine, the so called Blank Loader has been developed and manufactured in Elopak’s own manufacturing plant in Mönchengladbach. The robot unit’s design is highly flexible: on a maximum pallet size of 1,250 x 1,250mm, any palletizing scheme and various packing materials that can be processed by the filling machine can be handled.

    With a footprint of only 3,3 x 3,2 m, the space requirements are minimal. With this development, Elopak has followed its philosophy of compact and modular design utilized for the aseptic filling machine E-PS120A.

    “Based on our requirements, we decided in favour of robotic technology. With this technology, we have reached the highest level of flexibility so that we can offer suitable solutions for future requirements,” explains Wolfgang Buchkremer, Head of Research & Engineering at Elopak EQS GmbH.

    Quality optimization and automation of repetitive manual activities
    The packaging material is carried out by a robotic gripping device with vacuum technology. Every box is scanned via a barcode reader. By comparing the EAN number of the box to the programming, the correct assignment of pack material and fill content is ensured. Simultaneously, the minimum shelf-life of the pack material is verified. Damaged or incorrect boxes are automatically rejected and are therefore not forwarded to the filling process, enabling the number of defective fillings and waste to be minimized.

    Besides precision and automatic verification processes, the innovative opening mechanism contributes as well to quality optimization: instead of cutting the box open, as it is usually the case, it is opened by glue reactivation. Therefore, dust and fibers, which could easily end up in the filling machine and might negatively impact quality, are avoided.

    The pre-folded and side-sealed carton blanks are automatically extracted from the box, transported to the machine and inserted into the blank feeder.

    Pallet changes are due only every 90 minutes, which enables the operator to be available for other tasks within the up or downstream processes.

    Better use of existing employee potential
    The modern automation replaces several working steps which until now the operating staff had to carry out manually: removing the box from the pallet, opening with box cutter, loading of the filling machine as well as disposing of the emptied boxes.

    “The operator does not have to be present, and is released from routine work. Depending on local conditions, up to 2-3 machines can be simultaneously managed by one operator,” explains Buchkremer. “It also has a hygienic advantage as all human contact is avoided; from the depalletization of the packaging materials through to the loading of the pallets with filled packages.“

    Pallet changes are indicated by an adjustable countdown timer, accompanied by an acoustic signal. The countdown timer can be adjusted individually on the HMI operator screen of the filling machine.

    The disposal of empty boxes is also carried out fully automatically. Boxes are folded flat for compact storage and are stored in the waste bin until dispatched. Similar to the pallet change, the request to empty the waste bin is also indicated on the monitor. The capacity of the waste bin, which can be conveniently transported on castors, comprises 2 pallets: therefore, the waste bin needs emptying every 3 hours only.

    The first prototype of the Blank Loader has been successfully tested at the Arla dairy at their site in Pronsfeld. After the first E-PS120A, Arla is already planning further installations of the robot unit for their aseptic filling lines from Elopak.

    Fitted to production conditions – customized parameterization
    The module and filling machine are connected to each other but operate independently. Therefore, in the event of malfunctioning or breakdown, the filling machine does not have to be stopped and can be manually loaded and operated, independently from the robot unit and without any efficiency loss.

    The advantages at a glance:
    -Maximized flexibility
    -Applicable for any palletizing scheme
    -Reduced blanks loading time
    -Pallet change every 90 minutes
    -Less manpower – more convenience
    -Reduced manual work for the machine operator
    -Improved quality and hygiene
    -Automatic inspection by 2D barcode reader
    -Innovative opening mechanism: less fibers, no dust
    -No physical contact between human and packaging material
    (Elopak GmbH)
     
    09.10.2017   Japan: Asahi Breweries raising beer prices for the first time since 2008    ( E-malt.com )

    Asahi Breweries Ltd. will raise the price of beer delivered mainly to bars and restaurants by about 10 percent in March 2018, the company’s first price hike since 2008, Asahi Shimbun reported on October 4.

    The increase will apply to bottles and barrels of the flagship Asahi Super Dry and other labels sold to wholesalers. The price for beer in cans will remain unchanged.

    Changes to the liquor tax law that took effect on June 1 more strictly control sales of beer and other alcoholic beverages at prices below the cost involved in retailing them, unless there is a good reason for doing so.

    Asahi decided to raise the price of beer because of higher distribution costs caused by a labor shortage, company officials said.

    According to the officials, the commercial beer market has been struggling in recent years because of the shrinking population and younger Japanese shifting to other alcoholic beverages.

    In 2016, sales of bottled beer decreased by about 40 percent over the figure in 2008. Sales of beer barrels to commercial establishments also declined by 8 percent over the same period.
     
    09.10.2017   The Czech Republic: Brewers seeking to reclaim pub drinkers    ( E-malt.com )

    Czech beer has an international worldwide reputation but there are worries that on the home market at least it could be losing its appeal, especially in local pubs and among its most fervent fans. That’s one of the reasons for nationwide action being staged by brewers, pubs, and restaurants, Radio Prague reported on September 27.

    A five day celebration of Czech beer – hopefully without too much of a hangover – was launched across the country on September 27 with dozens of breweries and hundreds of pubs and restaurants taking part. It’s framed around St. Wenceslas’ day – the patron of Czech beer and malt as well as the patron saint of the nation – which is marked on the following day.

    But the Czech beer industry currently has its worries and could do with help from the saintly patron. For all their success in conquering foreign markets, big brewers and small are concerned that they might be becoming increasingly disconnected from their domestic drinkers, especially those in traditional pubs.

    The latest figures suggest that only around four out of 10 beers are now consumed in Czech pubs with the increasing trend now for beer to be bought in shops and supermarkets and downed somewhere else, often at home.

    Martina Ferencová is the operational director of the Association of Breweries and Maltsters which is behind the fifth annual celebration known as Czech Beer Days. She explained why the drop in pub drinkers should be of concern.

    "It’s clear that Czechs’ life styles have changed and that they have less time to go down the pub or restaurant. Instead they are buying beer and taking it home. From this point of view, it’s not good because we believe that the Czech pub is part of our national identity. It is part of our cultural heritage and belongs to us, like Czech beer.ʺ

    Some of the events being put as part of the celebrations include specially brewed Saint Wenceslas beers, special food offers and recipes, and brewery tours by both multinational brewers and small micro producers.

    But Ferencová is nevertheless still pessimistic about the overall state of the Czech beer sector in spite of the fact that export sales are still strong and holding up well. She says it appears the sector has been hit hard by the smoking ban which came into effect across the country from the end of May and covered pubs, cafes, and restaurants.

    Already in July, beer sales in restaurants were down by 9.0 percent compared with the same month a year earlier and the same disappointing trend held good for August as well. These summer months are traditionally strong for beer sales. And she doesn’t expect any turnaround in the figures soon.

    ʺWe fear that there will be a drop in production and sales for this year. The ban on smoking has really removed the true beer drinkers. Pubs already look empty now and the weather is still good."
     
    09.10.2017   UK: Kingfisher eyeing launch of an Indian pale ale in the UK    ( E-malt.com )

    The European boss of Kingfisher beer is eyeing the launch of an Indian pale ale to complement the growing range of global brews it sells in a bid to appeal to a younger audience, The Telegraph reported on September 25.

    Damon Swarbrick said the company’s big challenge had been the decline of popularity of curry - a dish its beer famously accompanies - as the millennial generation turned its back on the 1990s/early 2000s favourite in favour of other global cuisine, including Asian dishes from Vietnam.

    The company has responded to this by signing deals to distribute drinks made by other companies such as Indonesian lager Bintang in the UK, as well as China’s Pearl River beer, brewed by Guangzhou Zhujiang Brewery. It will also begin distributing Sri Lanka’s biggest beer brand Lion here next month.

    But Mr Swarbrick said his company was aiming to enter the craft market next year.

    “Nobody should be able to do an Indian pale ale better than us,” he said. “We are getting our final strategy together and I would have thought by January next year we will have an IPA in the market to complement Kingfisher and our other brands.”

    Mr Swarbrick’s comments come as the company managed a 1.8pc rise in volumes in 2016 helping sales stay broadly flat at £13.35 mln. But pre-tax profits jumped by more than half to £390,855 in 2016 thanks to a major investment the prior year in replacing glassware at outlets which sell its drinks not being repeated.

    The chief executive said the company was also exporting more beer which it expected to help sales in the coming years.

    Kingfisher is run by United Breweries, which in turn is owned by Mendocino Brewing Company in California. But United Breweries founder Vijay Mallya now owns roughly 75pc of the Mendocino stock having initially bought a stake in 1997.

    Mendocino’s beers include Red Tail Ale, Blue Heron Pale Ale, Eye of the Hawk Select Ale, and Black Hawk Stout.
     
    09.10.2017   USA: Boston Beer affirms it ‘has no plans to be part of larger beer company anytime soon’    ( E-malt.com )

    Despite speculation that financial headwinds could cause the country’s largest craft brand to look to be acquired, Boston Beer Co. Inc. executives say the company is proud to be an independent craft brewer, the Boston Business Journal reported on September 28.

    The stock price for Boston Beer rallied 4 percent on September 25 after one analyst speculated that Boston Beer could be acquired if financial problems persist.

    Credit Suisse analyst Laurent Grandet said in a report that he was more bullish on Boston Beer than in the past, given the recent success of hard-seltzer brand Truly. But he also said there was still a lot of uncertainty, given how the company’s chief marketing officer, Jonathan Potter, would change the brand and when the search for a new CEO — already six months running — would conclude.

    Though the company's second quarter had been positive, the long-term direction of the brand was up in the air, given increased competition from other craft brewers.

    “We remain cautious on the trajectory of the business in 2018 and beyond. Samuel Adams brand is declining in both retail and on-premise and we don't think this could improve before mid-2018,” Grandet said.

    If a financial turnaround doesn't occur within the next year, Grandet predicted a takeover would be more likely.

    “We think the likelihood of a takeout goes higher as the Samuel Adams brand struggles to regain its footing in the highly competitive craft segment," Grandet said. "Founder Jim Koch has been publicly vocal about his aversion to selling the company to a larger beer brewer, but we think eventually he could soften his stance on this if the relaunch (of the brand's marketing) is eventually unsuccessful."

    Grandet initially speculated in mid-September that Boston Beer could also be acquired by a Japanese beer company, or even be taken private in a leveraged buyout. According to the report on September 25, Molson Coors would be “the most agreeable candidate for Koch to consider buying his company.”

    Boston Beer said it wouldn’t comment on market speculation, however affirmed that it has no plans to be part of a larger beer company anytime soon.

    “As our founder and brewer Jim Koch has publicly shared, we’re proud to be an independent American company,” said Jessica Pear, a spokeswoman for Boston Beer. “As a matter of fact, we’re so proud of that, we’ve adopted the Brewers Association’s independent craft seal and are incorporating it onto every bottle and can of beer that we brew.”

    Sonia Vora, with Morning Star, said it was unlikely Boston Beer would be acquired.

    "The Chairman of the firm’s board, C. James Koch, is the company’s founder and controls 100% of its Class B (voting) shares, allowing him to maintain significant influence over its long-term strategy," Vora said. "We also think that the firm prides itself on its history and independence, as one of the first craft brands, and as such don’t view a sale as likely."

    Other analysts weren't available to comment on a potential acquisition, but said they are skeptical that Boston Beer will be able to overcome longer-term struggles in the beer category.

    In a report from July, Cowen analysts said they expect that once summer is over, sales of Truly Spiked & Sparkling would begin to abate. Truly has helped increase sales for Boston Beer in the company’s second quarter, along with alcoholic iced tea brand Twisted Tea.

    Cowen also said the brand’s beer business will still face difficulty in the near term, especially as Boston Lager “remains under pressure.”
     
    09.10.2017   USA: Constellation Brands to debut new Corona Premier beer in February    ( E-malt.com )

    The Corona family is growing.

    Riding a surge of interest in Mexican beer, Constellation Brands will debut Corona Premier nationwide in February. It will also release Corona Familiar in all major Hispanic markets, a key demographic for the brand, CNBC reported on October 5.

    Constellation conducted a "successful" test of Premier before deciding to make it available nationwide. The company said the brew is aimed at a mature, sophisticated consumer looking to trade up from light beer.

    Premier contains 90 calories. In comparison, Extra contains 149 calories and Light contains 99.

    "Corona Premier capitalizes on industry and consumer trends including declines of domestic light beers, growth of high end and interest in new light beers that are premium and have badge value," a spokeswoman said in an email.

    Corona and Modelo's popularity has helped Constellation's sales surge. In the second quarter, which includes the all-important summer months, Constellation's beer sales grew nearly 13 percent from the same time last year.

    The company beat Wall Street's profit expectations for the ninth straight quarter, thanks to higher margins. On October 5, it also boosted its full-year earnings forecast to between $8.25 and $8.40 per share from $7.90 and $8.10 per share.

    Constellation's stock has skyrocketed about 36 percent this year. It gained 4 percent on October 5.

    Constellation's growth comes as some big brewers' sales have struggled thanks to consumers' thirst turning toward craft beer. On a call with investors, CEO Rob Sands credited Constellation for driving growth in U.S. beer imports.

    "So it's a little bit of a misnomer to think that the growth in the beer category, to the extent that there is any, is coming from [total] imports. It is not. It is coming from Constellation's portfolio of Mexican beers. And then there is also growth coming from the craft segment, and that's about it," Sands said.

    During the quarter, Constellation boosted TV and digital advertising for Corona Extra, Sands said. Corona Extra was the official beer sponsor for the much-hyped Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor fight.

    Constellation also launched a limited-edition can packaging, which the CEO said helped grow Corona's can format more than 20 percent.

    Sands said the company's beer portfolio is well-positioned for the second half of the year. Aside from Corona, Constellation's beers include brands such as Modelo, Pacifico and Funky Buddha, a craft beer it acquired last month.

    The holidays present a big opportunity for the alcohol industry. Constellation's portfolio includes wine and spirits brands such as Black Box, Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi and Robert Mondavi Private Selection wines, and SVEDKA.
    (Constellation Brands Inc.)
     
    09.10.2017   USA: Craft beer contribution to the US economy up more than 20% last year    ( E-malt.com )

    Craft beer’s economic contribution to the United States economy has grown by more than 20% in two years, according to numbers released by the Brewers Association (BA) on September 26.

    In announcing the results of its biennial economic impact study, the BA says small and independent American breweries added $67.8 billion to the economy in 2016, a 21.7% increase over 2014. This, despite growth of craft sales and production slowing dramatically over that same period.

    “As consumers continue to demand a wide range of high quality, full-flavored beers, small and independent craft brewers are meeting this growing demand with innovative offerings, creating high levels of economic value in the process,” BA Chief Economist Bart Watson said in a statement.

    The study covers the total impact of craft-brewed beer as it works its way through the three-tier distribution system, plus food and merchandise sold at brewpubs and brewery taprooms. This production and sales process created more than 456,000 full-time equivalent jobs – a 7.5% increase from 2014 - with breweries and brewpubs directly accounting for more than 128,000 of those jobs.

    With $7.3 billion worth of annual output, California leads the nation in economic impact, followed by Pennsylvania ($5.8 billion), Texas ($4.5 billion), New York ($3.4 billion) and Florida ($3.1 billion), which is believed to be the fastest-growing craft beer state in the country.

    The per-capita picture for 21+ adults looks quite different, with Colorado ($764 per person), Vermont ($667), Oregon ($659), Pennsylvania ($616) and Montana ($550), with its 1 million residents and 68 craft breweries, comprising the top five.

    The U.S. supported 5,301 craft breweries at the end of 2016, compared with 3,780 two years earlier. However, approximately a dozen larger craft breweries sold to global brewery conglomerates in that period, losing them the “craft brewery” designation and removing them from the BA’s statistics.

     
    06.10.2017   THE SMART SIDEL SUPER COMBI BRINGS EQUIPMENT INTELLIGENCE TO TODAY’S PRODUCTION    ( Company news )

    Company news Successfully launched at Drinktec 2017, the world’s leading trade fair for the beverage and liquid food industry, the Super Combi is designed and engineered as a single smart solution. It makes life easier for producers of water and CSD beverages, via integrated data-driven intelligence, making optimum performance easily and continuously achievable across the entire production process.

    Sidel Super Combi is the next generation solution integrating five process steps: preform feeder, blower, labeller, filler/capper and cap feeder into an all-in-one smart system. To deliver this self-optimising performance and increased long-term value, it combines intelligent automation with innovative technologies of connected machines and data-analytics management, leading to optimised production and maintenance services.

    A smarter solution for today’s demands
    Consumer preferences are broadening and overall demand is increasing due to unprecedented population growth, increased consumer spending power and growing demand for personalisation of products in terms of design and taste. The ability of production solutions to satisfy output requirements for new products efficiently, while implementing technologies that improve long-term viability, has become vital to manufacturers’ success.

    Beverage producers simply want a solution that does the thinking for them and acts on their behalf. This is where Sidel Super Combi, with its data-driven intelligence and advanced automation, provides the answers. For instance, autonomous regulation is achieved via Sidel Intelli-adjust™ controlling the system’s performance and automatically applying adjustments wherever they are needed. Long-term enhancement without compromising on simplified operation, reduced maintenance time and minimal downtime are all also possible thanks to intuitive interfaces such as augmented reality guidance and GPS localisation.

    For instance, for improved reactivity of the operator, it has an automated alert system to provide advanced timely reports through the EIT™ (Efficiency Improvement Tool) audio and smart portables, on events such as changeovers, label or cap shortages and possible faults. Improved Root Cause Analysis (RCA) software enables intuitive intervention, making it easier for operators to solve problems quickly. Additionally, guided trouble-shooting reduces operator skill requirements and offers increased repeatability of changeover and maintenance procedures. By ‘learning from experience’, the Sidel InUse platform is able to predict potential failures and optimise maintenance plans. Accessible via smartphone or tablet with a dedicated mobile app - developed for both Android and iOS - the platform enables producers to share and interpret the data of connected equipment. This helps to speed up problem solving and offers the chance of timely detection of possible issues, as well as guidance for their successful resolution. The Super Combi also provides real-time access to the Sidel Big Data repository - where customer data is safely held under conditions of total cyber security - for refining its own prediction algorithms. This makes it possible to maintain, control and even improve the performance of main components and modules.

    The lowest production cost per square metre
    To ensure an even more sustainable production, the Super Combi has been entirely designed to minimise the use of resources. For example, the Super Combi blower - based on the Sidel Matrix™ platform - operates at high oven efficiency and minimal environmental footprint; yet pushing the boundaries of ultra-lightweight bottle production and handling, thanks to the labelling process now integrated in the solution. Consumption of electrical power is reduced by up to 45%, preform-heating time is lowered by up to 15% and, with the option of AirEco2 double air-recovery, a 35% reduction in the use of compressed air is also achieved. To further reduce the environmental footprint, the entire system is based on brushless motors. In addition, the new melter and glue control distribution on the labeller minimises the consumption. The OptiFeed® cap feeder system from Gebo Cermex, part of the Sidel Group, combines storage, elevation, orientation and high-speed feeding with energy savings, as its individual cap-elevating technology eliminates the need for compressed air and electronic fan systems during extraction.

    Ergonomic, compact and easy to operate
    The solution is designed for ease of operation, with its intuitive interfaces, ergonomic design and clear guidance on operations and maintenance activities for ongoing high levels of performance and uptime. Super Combi has been engineered to ensure operator access is immediate and safe, examples being the location of the preform feeder at ground level, or the labeller and cap feeder which are both designed for easier access. With the new ergonomic, compact design - up to 30% smaller when compared to standalone equipment - and increased visibility of all blocks, the Sidel Super Combi makes single-operator control possible.

    Safer and more hygienic
    With a strict focus on hygiene, packaging quality and beverage integrity, Sidel Super Combi ensures maximum food safety, a critical requirement for producers. Gentle handling of the preforms by the preform feeder ensure their original quality is retained. Similarly, positive handling of the bottles by the neck throughout the whole system and across a safe environment - from blowing to capping - guarantees optimal care. This enables higher bottle quality overall and maximises lightweighting opportunities. The integrated vision/rejection systems from preform to caps always ensure the best product quality, saving both raw materials and resources consumption.

    Ultimate flexibility for improved uptime
    The integration of innovative new technologies minimises changeovers on the Sidel Super Combi, which can be guided for improved speed and efficiency to keep the line running smoothly with minimal downtime. The simplified settings of the preform feeder, the quick release blowing moulds and a reliable high-speed reel auto-splicer, along with the sector based vacuum drum of the labeller, are just some of the ways that Sidel Super Combi makes changeovers easier and faster than ever.

    Innovative labelling flexibility to minimise downtime
    High-output production of beverages at high and very high speeds requires equipment that overcomes traditional obstacles to ensure continuous uptime. The Sidel Super Combi is the result of extensive innovation and improvements to the company’s existing labelling technology. With different machine configurations possible based on the output required, the new labelling process is highly efficient and provides unmatched process flexibility, the integrated labeller being able to carry out different labelling processes, including the application of PSL (pressure sensitive labels) and roll-fed labels.

    The labelling process can be optimised to work with up to three stations running simultaneously or with a ‘master/slave’ setup, in which the one or two stations run while the designated ‘slave’ station remains idle - still achieving the nominal output. When a reel-change is required, the roles automatically switch. This creates a labelling process that delivers uncompromising continuous high-speed production with no product loss or reduction in speed of production resulting from reel-changes.

    By utilising integrated equipment intelligence and innovative technologies from Sidel, the new Super Combi enables continuous production-optimisation and enhanced performance for producers of PET bottled water and CSD. This makes it the ideal way to maximise production and increase line efficiency while reducing TCO. It is yet another smart solution from Sidel. The next generation of water and CSD production is available now.
    (Sidel International AG)
     
    05.10.2017   Feldmuehle is restructuring product portfolio as part of its long-term strategic orientation    ( Company news )

    Company news The new Managing Director Kayser is focusing on the expansion of customer proximity and product innovations

    Feldmuehle Uetersen GmbH is restructuring its product portfolio and sales organisation: the company's six product segments are now bundled into the business areas of Labelling Applications, Packaging Solutions and Graphical Options. From the restructuring under the new Managing Director Heiner Kayser, customer proximity shall benefit. The aim is to strengthen the market position of Feldmuehle in the three areas.

    With clear focus on high-quality label papers, packaging papers, graphic papers and cardboard, Feldmuehle is firmly dedicated to meet the requirements of the market. At the same time, the special expertise and experience of the employees as well as the flexible possibilities of the machine fleet are to be used even better according to the customer requirements. "We are concentrating on our greatest strengths," says Heiner Kayser, who is the Managing Director of Feldmuehle Uetersen GmbH since May this year. "Our aim is to be particularly close to the customer, to find innovative solutions for specific requirements and to constantly set standards in terms of quality and customer service." The objectives of Feldmuehle are clearly defined: the company's market shares are to be expanded in the three business areas and the position as supplier of high-quality white coated papers for the label, packaging and printing industries is to be strengthened.

    High service quality through customer-oriented sales
    As a result of the reorganisation of the product portfolio, the entire sales structure will be more stringently oriented to the customer. The sales support and field sales employees will specialise in one of the three business areas and be able to advise customers with in-depth product knowledge. "The name Feldmuehle stands for a particularly high service level", says Eckhard Kallies, Director Sales and Marketing. "The new structure allows us to address the requirements and needs even more intensively and to act as a true partner of our customers."

    Strengthening of the graphical area
    Within its graphic product range, the company is increasingly focusing on products with particularly high whiteness and premium character. Besides graphic papers, the high white cardboard VivaCard will be integrated. With another product in the pipeline, this business area is gaining additional importance. The objective is to be able to offer a broader graphic portfolio to the customers.

    Ambitions in the well-established labelling area
    With a long tradition and a high expertise in the production of label papers, Feldmuehle is one of the leading suppliers in this field. As a trendsetter, the company will expand its extensive and high-quality portfolio with innovative products and further expand its market position.

    Potentials in packaging
    In the area of flexible packaging papers and liners, the growth potential of the young, high-quality products will be fully utilised. Feldmuehle aims to further develop this business area through new product solutions, e.g. in the segment of barrier papers, and by offering innovative specialities to the customers.
    (Feldmuehle Uetersen GmbH)
     
    05.10.2017   MuCell proficiency strengthened in the southwest    ( Company news )

    Company news Picture: The ENGEL Technology Centre in Stuttgart is one of the largest in the company. The new duo 350 injection moulding machine with MuCell technology package is permanently available for ENGEL customers

    Structural foam moulding is one of the most important lightweight technologies available today and continues strong growth worldwide. The injection moulding machine manufacturer and provider of system solutions ENGEL, headquartered in Schwertberg, Austria, is responding to this trend by strengthening its application technology globally. One area of focus is Germany. In September, ENGEL Deutschland Technologieforum Stuttgart opened a MuCell Competence Centre.

    “As a Competence Centre, we are even better able to support our customers to more fully exploit the potential offered by the physical foaming process,” says Claus Wilde, Managing Director at ENGEL Deutschland in Stuttgart. “We already have a number of major customers here in southwestern Germany who use the MuCell process in their factories worldwide.”

    Therefore, a large manufacturing cell has been installed in the ENGEL Technology Centre in Stuttgart for customer trials, development work, application-specific consulting, training and small-lot production – for example, for initial sampling. Equipped with an ENGEL duo 350 injection moulding machine with a clamping force of 3500 kN, an integrated ENGEL easix multi-axis robot and a T-200 MuCell unit from the company’s technology partner Trexel, the cell covers a broad spectrum of applications.

    Long before the Competence Centre was opened, ENGEL had appointed a MuCell Technology Expert for the site. Over the past months, Lukas Neunzig has successfully completed numerous MuCell projects with customers from around the world at ENGEL’s headquarters in Schwertberg and at the large-scale machine plant in St. Valentin, and he is bringing this experience to Stuttgart.

    To celebrate the inauguration of the Competence Centre, ENGEL hosted a MuCell technology event in mid-September, which was fully booked several weeks in advance with over 120 participants. “The great success of our event confirms the huge potential and strong demand here in the southwest,” Wilde emphasises. The technology event underlined a further trend: MuCell is not just for car manufacturers. “We are receiving a growing number of inquiries from other industries as well, such as technical injection moulding and medical technology,” says Wilde.

    Less weight, better component properties
    There are two main factors that are key to the great success of MuCell technology. First is the general lightweight trend and, second, the high quality of the components produced in the structural foam moulding process.

    Physical foaming involves the injection and homogeneous distribution of a blowing agent into the plastic melt during plastification. After injection into the mould, the gas separates from the melt and creates a fine-cell foam structure. In this way, significantly less material is needed to fill the cavities compared to standard injection moulding and the component weight decreases. At the same time, components produced by MuCell have proven to have high dimensional stability. Since foaming enhances the flow properties of the melt, even challenging geometries with undercuts are completely filled.

    MuCell is a brand owned by the company Trexel, located in Wilmington, MA, USA. As a system supplier, ENGEL imports the MuCell systems for its customers and manages the integration of the controls and safety aspects into the injection moulding machine, making it very easy to implement the technology.

    Apart from Stuttgart, ENGEL also offers customers its MuCell know-how and machine capabilities in Austria, the USA and China.
    (Engel Austria GmbH)
     
    04.10.2017   Johnnie Walker introduces latest limited edition Blenders' Batch Whiskies    ( Company news )

    Company news Johnnie Walker launches three new experimental whiskies from its Blenders’ Batch range for both whisky aficionados and cocktail lovers

    The three new blends in the collection are Johnnie Walker Blenders’ Batch Wine Cask Blend, Johnnie Walker Blenders’ Batch Rum Cask Finish and Johnnie Walker Blenders’ Batch Espresso Roast. Each blend is designed to form the foundation of exceptional Scotch cocktails and yet, like all the brand’s classic whiskies, they can also be enjoyed straight up over ice.

    Johnnie Walker Blenders’ Batch whiskies are the result of bold experiments that push the boundaries in flavour. Like Johnnie Walker Black Label, which was first borne out of flavour experiments more than a century ago and has since gone on to become a true icon of Scotch, these new whiskies are crafted by a small team of 12 passionate and skilled blenders, under the expert guidance of two-time Master Blender of the Year Jim Beveridge.

    Johnnie Walker blender Aimée Gibson led the development of Johnnie Walker Blenders’ Batch Wine Cask Blend. She believes the parallels between crafting great whisky and creating extraordinary cocktails make the World Class Final in Mexico City the perfect environment for the introduction of these new whiskies.

    Aimée commented: “An unforgettable drinks experience is always the end goal. It is what elite mixologists strive to achieve when perfecting cocktails and it is what we, as whisky makers, have at the forefront of our thinking when experimenting and creating exciting new blends”.

    Master Blender Jim Beveridge said: “At Johnnie Walker, we know how to make exceptional Scotch. That was true when we first created Johnnie Walker Black Label over a hundred years ago and it is still true today. Our philosophy and our commitment to creating exceptional Scotch Whiskies is central to everything we do.

    “Our blenders are given free rein to take inspiration from anything and everything around them when making whisky: experiences they’ve had, personal passions, sounds, and flavours. Their passion drives them to challenge the whisky-making status quo and to tap into other flavour cultures to create the best possible flavour combinations for all of our blends, every day.”
    (Diageo plc)
     
    02.10.2017   SWA welcomes EU-Canada trade deal    ( Company news )

    Company news The Scotch Whisky Association (SWA) is welcoming the EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) which came into force on 21 September.

    Canada is Scotch Whisky's fifteenth largest market by value, with exports worth more than £73 million a year. CETA delivers a range of market access improvements, paving the way for export growth to Canada, according to the SWA. And Scotch Whisky accounts for almost a fifth of all Scottish exports to Canada.

    Benefits of CETA for Scotch Whisky include:
    -Fewer internal trading restrictions;
    -A level playing field for intellectual property rights for EU products in Canada;
    -Removal of the market-distorting effects of the Canadian liquor boards.

    Another major breakthrough is the removal of the current requirement in Canada to blend local spirit with bulk imports of spirit drinks with a geographical indication (GI), such as Scotch Whisky. Under this requirement, a minimum of 1% Canadian content had to be added to imports if the product was bottled by anyone other than the Canadian liquor boards. This requirement had a negative impact on Scotch Whisky bottled in Canada, after being made and matured in Scotland, as it could not benefit from its GI status.

    Karen Betts, Scotch Whisky Association chief executive, said: "Open markets matter to Scotch Whisky and CETA delivers benefits that will help to promote fair competition and grow our exports to Canada. With the Scotch Whisky industry supporting 40,000 jobs and adding value of £5 billion annually, the boost to trade from CETA will be good for the entire UK economy and export success.

    "As we move towards Brexit, we are calling for the UK to pursue an ambitious global trade policy. A first priority will be to ensure the benefits of existing trade deals, such as CETA, will continue to be enjoyed by UK businesses. And we are calling on the UK Government then to pursue a series of new trade deals with markets around the world."
    (SWA The Scotch Whisky Association)
     
    29.09.2017   SIGNATURE PACK wins the Beverage Innovation Award 2017    ( Company news )

    Company news Innovation from SIG convinces the jury – added value for consumer, the beverage
    industry and the environment

    Picture: The SIGNATURE PACK from SIG convinced the jury: The world's first aseptic carton pack, which is 100% linked to plant-based renewable material, has won the Beverage Innovation Award 2017. Photo: SIG Combibloc

    The SIGNATURE PACK from SIG convinced the jury: The world's first aseptic carton pack, which is 100% linked to plant-based renewable material, has won the Beverage Innovation Award 2017 in the category ‘Best carton or pouch’.

    The Beverage Innovation Award has been presented by FoodBev.com every year since 2002. This year, the jury received 227 applications from manufacturers and suppliers of the beverage industry from 33 countries. The Beverage Innovation Award recognizes outstanding innovations in areas such as beverages, packaging, marketing and sustainability.

    This year, the Beverage Innovation Award in the category "Best carton or pouch" goes to SIG and the SIGNATURE PACK. The jury's verdict states: "The SIGNATURE PACK is a commendable environmental step forward”.

    Udo Felten, Manager Product Related Global Environmental Sustainability & Affairs at SIG, accepted the award for the SIGNATURE PACK at the drinktec trade fair: "We are very proud to have received the Beverage Innovation Award. The positive assessment of the international jury of experts confirms that our SIGNATURE PACK offers undeniable added value for the beverage industry and consumers. By choosing the SIGNATURE PACK, beverage manufacturers are helping to reduce the use of fossil raw materials, and to replace them with plant-based, natural raw materials instead. This is a clear advantage for the environment and the feedback from our customers is very positive. For us, the market launch of the SIGNATURE PACK is an important milestone on our Way Beyond Good. This is how we signify our way to becoming "net-positive", i.e. to do more for the society and the environment than we take out".
    (SIG Combibloc GmbH)
     
    28.09.2017   Beviale Moscow: No. 1 platform for the beverage industry in Russia and neighbouring countries     ( Company news )

    Company news •Further growth apparent for third round
    •Premiere: Pavilion for Wine Production & Manufacturing
    •PETarena powered by PETnology

    From 27 February to 1 March 2018, Beviale Moscow will open its doors to professionals from the Russian beverage industry for the third time. Following its successful debut in 2015 and the significant growth in the number of exhibitors, exhibition area and visitors in 2017, Beviale Moscow has therefore become established as the No. 1 platform for the beverage industry in Russia and surrounding countries. Substantial growth is also expected for the third round of
    the event at the Crocus Expo International Exhibition Center. The trade fair for the Russian beverage industry covers the entire process chain, underscoring its holistic approach. Based on trends and developments in the Russian market, eviale Moscow will once again explore overarching issues for the industry and in this context can announce a few new features. One such example is the Pavilion for
    Wine Production & Manufacturing, which will make its debut at Beviale Moscow 2018. The much discussed topic of PET will also be covered again in the “PETarena powered by PETnology”.

    The holistic approach of Beviale Moscow will continue in 2018. For visitors, the focus will be on beverage producers that present the entire beverage production process chain at the event: from suitable raw materials through custom technologies to efficient packaging, logistics and creative marketing ideas. Beviale Moscow is not limited to specific kinds of drinks but offers solutions for all segments: from alcoholic drinks like beer, wine and spirits to alcohol-free and soft drinks, juices and mineral water and liquid dairy products.


    Premiere for Pavilion for Wine Production & Manufacturing
    Wine production and processing is one of most dynamic segments in the Russian beverage industry. “We are delighted that the topic of wine is celebrating its premiere at the Beviale Moscow 2018 as part of the Pavilion for Wine Production & Manufacturing”, Thimo Holst, Project Manager Beviale Moscow, announces proudly. “Thanks to our concept we were able to persuade the largest Russian wine producers’ association, the Union of Winegrowers and Winemakers of Russia, to become our sponsor, which yet again underlines the importance of this segment”,
    continues Holst. This creates a targeted platform for decision-makers from wine cellars and for beverage specialists from Russia and the CIS states. Naturally, wine is also represented in other areas of the trade fair programme: A young winemaker competition is planned in collaboration with WorldSkills (www.worldskills.org) and the supporting programme also features keynotes on this topic. “We are inviting the biggest and most important local wine producers to the trade fair. This will ensure that suppliers to the wine industry will meet the right target group at Beviale Moscow”, says Holst. “Because Russia has a government funding programme for wine production but lacks its own technologies, we see also see great opportunities here for international suppliers”, he continues.

    PETarena powered by PETnology
    Following its successful premiere in 2017, the “PETarena powered by PETnology” will be back at Beviale Moscow in 2018 to showcase attractive solutions for the entire PET supply chain. “PET is a much discussed topic in Russia and a major trend for all possible types of drinks, so it is an integral part of the key platform for the Russian beverages industry”, explains Holst.
    The subject is covered in numerous presentations by leading companies in
    the PET packaging sector, which address SMEs and global players alike.

    Other programme highlights
    The supporting programme targets decision-makers from the drinks industry. As well as a wide-ranging programme which will prompt a discussion with policymakers in attendance on laws and guidelines for beverage manufacturing, the issue of professional development will again be under the spotlight at Beviale Moscow. The two-day VLB Seminar for Microbrewers, organised by the Berlin-based Research and Teaching Institute for Brewing, will explore the technological and qualitative aspects of brewing. Knowledge transfer, networking and professional exchanges on
    the topic of craft beer will top the agenda. The Russian beer prize ROSGLAVPIVO, which was initiated at Beviale Moscow 2017 by the Barley, Malt, Hops, and Beer Union (BMBU) in collaboration with Private Brauereien Deutschland e.V., will be presented at the trade fair again in 2018. The CRAFT DRINKS CORNER, in cooperation with the Partner Association of Beer and Beverage Market, will showcase the diversity of hand-crafted beverages. Six months ahead of the fair, all preparations are therefore in full swing.
    (NürnbergMesse GmbH)
     
    28.09.2017   SIPA and EREMA hold Open House - Live production on world's first ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... PET Inline Preform system

    A very special Open House was held from 4 to 6 September at the SIPA headquarters in Vittorio Veneto, Italy, where the unique direct processing of washed PET flakes to make food contact grade preforms was demonstrated live on the world's first PET Inline Preform system. The system will be in industrial operation next year.

    Numerous representatives from the beverage industry and well-known brands attended the three-day Open House held by SIPA and EREMA and saw a compelling live production performance of the world's first PET Inline Preform system. SIPA, the leading manufacturer of PET packaging solutions from Italy, and EREMA, specialists in the manufacturing of plastic recycling systems, have together developed a unique, flexible, direct processing solution to make food contact compliant inline preforms from PET flakes in a single step. The pivotal product from EREMA in the collaboration is VACUREMA technology, which is combined with SIPA's XTREME preform production system. The pioneering system offers PET processors economic and ecological benefits: energy savings, lower logistics and process costs and higher profitability thanks to the direct link of the two systems eliminating all the waste of the complete process. Another unique selling proposition over conventional injection moulding is that lightweighting up to 8% is possible with the patented XTREME preform design.

    "We previewed this technology at the Discovery Day 2016 and it is now ready for production. The PET Inline Preform system catches the spirit of the age and even goes one step further. There is increasing demand among customers for flexible and energy-saving processing possibilities. With this system we support them in remaining an innovative part of the ever developing plastics industry," says Christoph Wöss, Business Development Manager for Bottle Applications at the EREMA Group. Trials carried out previously on the PET Inline Preform system showed that the weight consistency, viscosity and colour values of the preforms – depending on flake quality – are on a par with those of virgin material. "We were keen to show the first PET Inline Preform System to interested Open House guests. This innovative technology makes real the dream of a circular sustainable economy with results exceeding our most optimistic expectations at the beginning of the project. The rPET preforms have quality properties and performances comparable to the injection moulded preforms made in virgin resin. We are delighted about the strong interest and so many enthusiastic participants," says Enrico Gribaudo, General Manager of SIPA.
    (EREMA Engineering Recycling Maschinen und Anlagen Ges.m.b.H.)
     
    27.09.2017   Premiere: Krones’ first block solution for cans - Modulfill Bloc FS-C    ( Company news )

    Company news Picture: For the first time, Krones’ portfolio includes a filler-seamer block for cans

    This is definitely something new: for the first time, beverage producers can buy from Krones an all-in-one solution for filling and seaming cans. This block is, of course, packed full of Krones’ know-how coupled with state-of-the-art technology.

    For the filling function, Krones has opted for field-proven technology: the volumetric Modulfill VFS-C can filler is suitable for both the small and large output ranges, and (depending on the container size and format involved) handles between 18,000 and 135,000 cans an hour. Maximised filling accuracy is assured by an inductive flow meter, which reliably measures the inflowing liquid until the specified fill volume has been reached. The filling valve used scores highly in terms of a hygienically sophisticated solution, from product routing to the pressing-on unit. Additional pluses in terms of hygiene include the no-front-table machine concept, in which Monotec starwheel columns with sloping surfaces are used throughout, for example, plus the grease-free main bearing, which is operated by means of automatic oil-circulating lubrication.

    The Modulseam can seamer is an absolute innovation on the market, incorporating empirical feedback from Krones’ long years of experience in the fields of filling and closing technology.

    The highlight: both modules are precisely matched to each other – which means they work hand in hand. At the Modulseam, too, hygiene is a paramount consideration: a seamer zone separated from the surrounding work environment, plus the roof table, where all cables and media piping are located outside the process zone, ensure a dependable seaming process.

    With the Modulfill Bloc FS-C, Krones is expanding its corporate competence in terms of can handling, since in this harmonised system both Krones machines are perfectly coordinated – which makes the operator’s daily work, in particular, a whole lot easier: a standardised operator control concept and a shared touch-screen ensure that product and format change-overs can be performed without double manipulations and legwork. Quick-change handling parts at the filler and seamer, moreover, mean short times for changing over to different can sizes.
    (Krones AG)
     
    26.09.2017   Engel at Plastimagen 2017: For higher productivity and quality     ( Company news )

    Company news inject 4.0 – this is ENGEL's answer to the challenges of the fourth industrial revolution. At Plastimagen 2017, from November 7 to 10 in Mexico City, ENGEL will demonstrate how these new opportunities – tailored to the requirements of the respective country and industry – can be optimally utilised. In addition, the exhibition booth of the Austrian-based injection moulding machine manufacturer and systems solution provider will be presenting MuCell foam injection moulding for the automotive industry, as well as the extremely precise and very economical processing of liquid silicone.

    Photo: At Plastimagen, ENGEL will produce coasters on a tie-bar-less victory machine using liquid silicone.

    "We invite fair visitors to get to know our smart factory products at our booth and to see for themselves what a huge impact even smaller individual solutions can have", announces Walter Jungwirth, Managing Director of ENGEL de Mexico in Querétaro. By networking production systems, the systematic use of machine, process and production data, and the use of intelligent assistance systems, the manufacturing processes in a smart factory can continuously optimise themselves. As a result, the productivity and quality of production increase, and at the same time processors can react with great flexibility to rapidly changing requirements.

    ENGEL committed to this trend early on, and today, under the name inject 4.0, offers numerous sophisticated products and services for all areas of the smart factory – smart machine, smart service and smart production. All of the products provide a tremendous benefit, individually as well as in the context of a high-level digitalisation strategy. With this modular approach, ENGEL is making the entry into digitalisation and networking especially easy.

    Self-optimising machine
    With production cells becoming more and more complex due to increasing process integration and automation, steering and controlling them must become that much more simple and intuitive. Self-adapting assistance systems play a decisive role in this. They increase process consistency and quality without requiring the machine operator to acquire special expertise.

    To clearly demonstrate the functionality of these solutions, during the four days of the exhibition ENGEL will produce inject 4.0 logos on an e-motion 80 TL injection moulding machine at its booth. The CC300 machine control is capable of simulating process fluctuations; the automatic readjustments by the intelligent assistance systems can then be tracked live on the display of the machine. While iQ weight control maintains consistent injected melt volume throughout the entire injection moulding process, iQ clamp control monitors the mould breathing in order to calculate and automatically adjust the optimal clamping force. Fluctuations from the target values are automatically detected and compensated for within the same shot, thus preventing rejects.

    iQ flow control, the third assistance system presented at the Plastimagen, will connect the injection moulding machine, which is equipped with an e-flomo electronic temperature control water distributor, to the temperature control unit, enabling the pump speed to automatically adjust to the actual requirement. This results in higher energy efficiency. Together with its partner HB-Therm, ENGEL has developed its own line of temperature control units called e-temp.

    Capping costly energy peaks
    In several Expert Corners, visitors can dive even deeper into the subject of inject 4.0. Some of the topics included will be the online-support and remote maintenance tool e-connect.24 and the MES authentig. This manufacturing execution system was developed for the specific requirements of the injection moulding industry and therefore achieves an especially greater depth of vertical data integration, down to the level of individual cavities. authentig creates transparency, for example to optimise the utilisation of a machine pool's total capacity, or to correlate key productivity indicators with economic objectives.

    The MES has a modular structure and can be precisely adapted to the individual requirements of the processor. "Energy" is the most recent of the authentig modules. Not only does it make the energy consumption of individual consumers in the injection moulding operation transparent, but it also reliably caps peaks in the power demand. This is made possible by defining situational consumption limits for each individual consumer, and then dynamically allocating the pre-defined power amounts to the consumers. This intelligent hall management can help to significantly reduce the energy costs for the machine pool.

    Less weight, better component properties
    MuCell injection foam moulding will be the main focus of the automotive exhibition area at the ENGEL booth. "MuCell offers the opportunity of combining resource-efficient lightweight design with a high degree of cost efficiency and excellent component properties," emphasises Jungwirth. "This combination means that the process is continuing to rapidly gain significance." During the trade fair, ENGEL will produce passenger car cooling radiator components on an ENGEL duo 2460/500 injection moulding machine using the MuCell process.

    During physical foaming, nitrogen is injected into the plastic melt as a propellant and homogeneously distributed. Following the injection into the form, the gas separates from the melt again, forming a fine-cell foam structure. In comparison to the standard injection moulding process, this method reduces the raw material consumption and the weight of the component. At the same time, MuCell-produced components do not display any distortion or shrinkage.

    MuCell is a brand of the Trexel company, based in Wilmington, MA, USA. As a systems provider, ENGEL imports MuCell systems for its customers, also managing the integration of the controls and safety measures into the injection moulding machine, making it particularly easy to implement the technology.

    Tie-bar-less for consistently high quality
    Burr-free, zero-waste, rework-free, and fully automated – these are the key elements in the economic injection moulding manufacturing of sophisticated components from liquid silicone. At the Plastimagen, ENGEL will demonstrate how this can be put into practice by manufacturing coasters in a 4-cavity mould on a hydraulic victory 200/120 injection moulding machine. Due to its tie-bar-less clamping unit, the victory provides advantages for many liquid silicone applications. For example, the patented Force-Divider allows the moving mould mounting platen to follow the mould precisely while clamping force is building up, and ensures that the clamping force is evenly distributed across the platen face. This allows both the outer and inner cavities to be kept closed with exactly the same force, ensuring consistent compression of the mould and a consistently high product quality.

    Further advantages of the barrier-free clamping unit are fast changes to the mould set-up, optimal automation concepts and particularly compact production cells. Without any tie-bars in the way, the mould mounting platens can be utilised fully, right up to the edge of the platen, so that even large and bulky moulds can be fitted on comparatively small injection moulding machines. This reduces the system footprint, for example, in the case of multi-component applications or multi-cavity moulds.

    ENGEL at Plastimagen 2017: Hall D, Booth 514
    (Engel Austria GmbH)
     
    26.09.2017   New BrauBeviale information platform is online    ( BrauBeviale 2018 )

    BrauBeviale 2018 Preparations are in full swing for the next BrauBeviale triple event a good year before it opens its doors. The capital goods exhibition for the beverage industry is launching a new information platform geared towards the trade community at large. Both exhibitors and interested companies, trade visitors and media representatives will find the latest information about the exhibition in a clearly designed and structured platform in the Newsroom.

    The News tab (www.braubeviale.de/en/news) on the BrauBeviale website now combines press releases, photos and videos on BrauBeviale with short reports about the Beviale Family. The trade community at large can also discover news about the exhibition and the beverage industry. Andrea Kalrait, Director of Exhibitions at BrauBeviale and Product Manager for the Beviale Family, is excited: “Concentrating all relevant information about BrauBeviale in a central location and the overview that the Newsroom offers of the Beviale Family is not only beneficial for our communications. I also think that the lively design with lots of pictures is very successful.”

    Information in a compact and attractive form
    The BrauBeviale Newsroom is especially impressive with its multimedia combination of text, pictures and video materials as well as maximum user friendliness. Regular short reports, for example detailing important deadlines and services, are coupled with images and videos of the last event and an overview of the latest press releases. The different groups of topics are structured into modules in a compact and clear way.

    All exclusive services for media representatives, such as press events, inclusion in the press distribution list, on-site press support and accreditation guidelines, can be found under the For Journalists tab (www.braubeviale.de/press).

    BrauBeviale 2018: Preparations in progress
    The capital goods exhibition for the beverage industry is taking its regular break in 2017. The next triple will begin in November 2018. Preparations are in full swing for the next event a good year before it opens its doors.

    Save the dates:
    13-15 November 2018
    12-14 November 2019
    10-12 November 2020
    (NürnbergMesse GmbH)
     
    25.09.2017   Australia: AB InBev acquiring New South Wales-based craft brewer 4 Pines    ( E-Malt.com )

    The world’s biggest brewer AB InBev is acquiring Manly, New South Wales-based craft brewer 4 Pines for an undisclosed amount, The Australian reported on September 22.

    Belgium-headquartered AB InBev already owns the Melbourne-based Carlton & United Breweries.

    4 Pines said the deal would enable its operations to expand while retaining its people, culture and identity. 4 Pines will continue to operate its Brookvale and Manly breweries.

    “Will keep doing what we’ve always done, except now we are able to realise our long-term goals even sooner and immediately roll out some plans that are seriously epic,” said 4-Pines co-founder Jaron Mitchell.

    Originally from Western Australia, Mr Mitchell moved to Manly on Sydney’s northern beaches, chasing a career in the accounting and finance sector

    AB InBev’s Asia-Pacific south zone president Jan Craps said he was excited to be partnering with 4 Pines. “We will support their ambitious plans for the future, using our expertise and capability to help them get their exceptional beer to more people in Australia and globally,” he said.

    The 4 Pines team would be unchanged and management would remain in place to help grow the business, AB InBev said.

    AB InBev took charge of CUB last year.
     
    25.09.2017   Australia: Heineken 3 captures almost a third of Australia’s premium mid-strength beer market    ( E-Malt.com )

    The 3.3%-abv Heineken 3 has captured almost a third of the Australian premium mid-strength beer market since its launch last year, Heineken has said.

    The beer, which is the focus of a new marketing campaign in Australia, accounted for 31% of July sales in the premium mid-strength category, according to scanner data cited by Heineken on September 20. The brand also has a 21% awareness level with 18-65-year-old consumers and a 79% repurchase rate.

    Heineken said the performance "exceeded our expectations", adding that the awareness levels were "great for a product that has only been in the Australian market for 12 months".

    Heineken 3 was launched exclusively in Australia in August last year and is a low-carb and calorie beer that aims to recruit female drinkers with a more health-conscious message. According to Heineken, the international premium mid-strength segment grew by 60% in Australia in 2016.
     
    25.09.2017   Big time saving during format conversions: KHS enables fast conveying mandrel changeovers    ( Company news )

    Company news In developing a new fast changeover concept KHS has greatly reduced changeover times on its InnoPET Blomax stretch blow molders.

    -Changeover time reduced by more than half
    -All Blomax systems retrofittable
    -Already successfully established on the market

    In developing a new fast changeover concept KHS has greatly reduced changeover times on its InnoPET Blomax stretch blow molders. The optimized active mandrel now enables format changeover times to be reduced by more than half for all standard neck designs. This new option is of interest to all beverage producers who bottle products with different types of neck.

    During a format changeover operators not only switch over the blow molds but other components as well. The conveying mandrel in particular is of especial significance in this process as a full changeover of these format parts was extremely time consuming to date. “Depending on its size a high-performance Blomax stretch blow molder can have around 280 conveying mandrels,” explains Marco Böhnke, product manager for stretch blow molding technology at KHS. When a product is changed over during beverage production and requires a change in the type of bottle neck, to date each individual mandrel had to be exchanged in its entirety.

    As part of KHS’ constant striving to improve its lines and machines the systems supplier has now developed a variant which is much quicker to replace, making changeovers ergonomic and tool free without any great force being required. Besides the conveying mandrels the shields, grippers and other parts can now also be easily switched over using quick-change mechanisms; in some cases these can be adjusted without any installation work being required by simply rotating the part. Thanks to the above measures formats can be changed over in less than half of the time operators used to need.

    In its new development KHS has retained its tried-and-tested active mandrel design. “The optimized changeover process is distinguished by the fact that only the actual format part, i.e. the mandrel head itself, is replaced, with the entire mandrel mechanism left untouched. This enables customers to save money and gain valuable production time,” states Böhnke, as a mandrel can now be replaced in about five seconds.
    Uncomplicated retrofits

    The new procedure can be easily retrofitted on any InnoPET Blomax Series IV stretch blow molder as following one-time adjustment of the conveying mandrels no further mechanical or electrical conversion of the machine is required. One KHS customer has already subjected the quick-change process to successful long-term testing. The system is also to be installed at a company on the German market in the near future.
    (KHS GmbH)
     
    25.09.2017   EU & Japan: Asahi Group to ramp up sales of its Super Dry beer in Europe    ( E-Malt.com )

    Asahi Group Holdings Ltd. will ramp up sales of its top-selling Super Dry beer in Europe with local production aided by faster integration of last year’s $11 billion purchase of brands from Anheuser-Busch InBev NV, Bloomberg reported on September 21.

    Japan’s largest brewer will produce Super Dry in Padua, Italy, starting this month and sell the premium brand in Italy and the U.K. by January, President Akiyoshi Koji said in an interview on September 21. Koji had previously expected sales to begin in 2019.

    Asahi sees overseas sales of Super Dry in Europe and other markets outside of China, Hong Kong and the U.S. almost doubling to 11 million cases within five years on distribution efficiencies. Koji said the brewer is also hoping to use its Super Dry brand to build a stronger presence in the U.S. as it seeks ways of expanding its sales channels there.

    Asahi is reaping benefits after strengthening its foothold in the European beer market with last year’s purchase of brands that catapulted it to be among the four biggest brewers on the continent. The Japanese company has been stepping up expansion overseas as demand at home wanes and local competition with rivals like Kirin Holdings Co. intensifies.

    The Padua factory that is producing Super Dry is part of the European assets acquired last year.

    “I tried the beer there before production began, and the taste was the same as in Japan,” Koji, 65, said at the brewer’s headquarters in Tokyo.

    The company is targeting 35 percent to 36 percent of its total operating profit to come from overseas within five to six years, up from a forecast of 31 percent for 2017. In August, Asahi raised its full-year profit forecast by 15 percent based on contributions from its European acquisitions as well as better-than-expected performance in its soft drinks and food businesses.

    Asahi’s goals for Europe are ambitious and the U.K. presents the biggest opportunity for Super Dry, said Euan McLeish, a Bernstein & Co. analyst in Hong Kong. “Asahi has set some extremely bold growth targets for the European business,” he said. “Producing Super Dry in Italy is a small step in the right direction.”

    Buying into Europe is part of Asahi’s plan to become a global premium beer company alongside Heineken NV and Anheuser-Busch InBev. Asahi in March completed the purchase of the beer business previously owned by SABMiller, including the popular Czech beer Pilsner Urquell. Last year, Asahi closed on a deal to buy Peroni Nastro Azzurro and other beer brands from Anheuser-Busch InBev, which took over SABMiller.

    Koji said Asahi would start selling Pilsner Urquell and Peroni in Japan next year.

    Asahi’s Super Dry, Japan’s first dry draft beer, was unveiled in 1987 and sold 200,000 cases in the first two weeks. In 1997, the brew was introduced in 12 European countries via imports.

    Although Asahi has little presence in the U.S., Koji said he would like to find new outlets to sell Super Dry in the world’s largest economy besides Japanese restaurants, where the beer is most commonly proffered. Koji said he wants to focus on Asahi’s own premium brand rather than craft beer in the U.S. He added he believes there is room in the global market for the taste of Japanese beer.

    “Growing Super Dry has the highest priority in North America for us,” Koji said.

    Meanwhile, its rivals have been busy making deals in craft brews. Sapporo Holdings Ltd. agreed earlier this year to acquire Anchor Brewing Co., a century-old San Francisco brewer that helped pioneer the craft-beer movement. Kirin, Japan’s second-biggest brewer, acquired about 25 percent of closely held Brooklyn Brewery for an undisclosed sum last year.

    Asahi has been shedding some assets to pay for its acquisitions. In June, the Japanese company said it’s selling its remaining stake in a joint venture with Tianjin-based Tingyi Cayman Islands Holding Corp. Asahi also hired Morgan Stanley to advise on the potential sale of its 20 percent holding in Tsingtao Brewery Co. Koji reiterated the company will decide what to do about the stake by the end of this year.
     
    25.09.2017   GEA impresses at drinktec 2017    ( Company news )

    Company news GEA presented an array of product innovations to numerous industry experts at drinktec 2017, the “World's Leading Trade Fair for Beverage and Liquid Food Technology”. Held every four years in Munich, the 2017 fair broke all records in attracting a total of 76,000 visitors from more than 170 countries and cementing its reputation as the world’s most important platform for innovations in the sector.

    This year, GEA’s innovations and product enhancements were presented under the slogan “Inspiring Beverage Solutions”. An increasingly international public at the booth witnessed how both project-specific one-off and standardized GEA solutions can help customers remain viable in the future, regardless of whether they are producing fruit juice, milk, wine or beer. The key customer requirements are quality results and the absolute reliability and safety of manufacturing processes, not to mention optimum productivity, constantly diminishing operating costs and top-notch ecological ratings.

    A particular highlight at this year’s trade fair was the market launch of the GEA Ariete Homogenizer 5400. In presenting a system which is not only currently the world’s most powerful high-pressure homogenizer, but which also raises the bar in terms of reliability, product safety and operating costs, GEA has opened a brand-new chapter in the history of high-pressure homogenization. With regard to beer manufacture, the company looked to the future and introduced its novel “Brewery 4.0” concept. Essentially a vision where brewing and fermenting take place in a continuous process, the concept is set to place exacting requirements on tomorrow’s technology and IT infrastructure. The pioneering element here is the merging of beer production with just-in-time production technology and the option of evaluating digital data flexibly. Digitalizing the various process stages will require huge volumes of data to be processed, but this will allow medium and long-term analyses of trends to be carried out with the aim of enhancing plant availability. GEA is also taking sustainability aspects into account, which affect both the efficiency and the energy and space requirements of plant and equipment.

    Besides the usual keen interest in GEA’s products and solutions, increasing demand for services was noted. Live demonstrations of GEA PerformancePlus and GEA Remote Eye Wear were focal points of interest, with beverage manufacturers appreciating that concepts like these will help to optimize the life-cycle costs of their plant. With GEA PerformancePlus, experts from GEA analyze online condition monitoring data to derive recommendations for optimizing plant operation. GEA Remote Eye Wear allows experts to provide machinery operators and service technicians with virtual support in real time.
    (GEA Group Aktiengesellschaft)
     
    25.09.2017   India: Newly appointed Mahou India CEO believes in huge growth potential of India’s beer market    ( E-Malt.com )

    Fernando Bustamente, the newly appointed CEO of Mahou India, a subsidiary of Mahou San Miguel, spoke with BW Hotelier about his plans for the company in India. Bustamente takes over from Erik d’Auchamp, who moves on as International Managing Director.

    Speaking about his journey so far, Bustamante said, “I feel extremely proud to be a part of Mahou San Miguel, a 126 year old Spanish brewing major and market leader in Spain. 26 years of experience, off and on trade business in Spain will hold me in very good stead, in my role to lead the company’s operations in India.”

    Bustamante believes that the Indian market, by virtue of being culturally and geographically diverse, offers a great learning experience and has got a huge growth potential.

    The Indian beer market is growing rapidly. In the data shared by Bustamante, it says during 2010-2015 period, the compound annual growth rate in terms of volume was 8.2 per cent, reaching 25 million hl in sales. The projections show a target of 33 million hl by 2020.

    Relating to the data shared by him, Bustamante stated, “There is definitely space for new players, and as a new player, we will find our space in the market by doing things differently. We want to create a beer-loving culture here in India where people enjoy beer but in a responsible way.”

    “Our India entry is a key strategic pillar for the growth of our business. It is the first country in which we have a fully owned subsidiary. India also is the only market outside of Spain where we own a brewery. With an investment of over 18 million euros, we are present in 14 markets in India,” Bustamante said.

    Engaging with the philosophy of launch, learn and scale Mahou India is currently in the initial phase and is constantly evolving and adapting to the way the Indian market functions.

    “Since our launch in India we have witnessed an evident transition in the tastes and preferences of our consumers and their inclination towards full flavoured beers like ours. We believe Spanish culture, in the form of 'Cañas y Tapas' is making inroads in India,” he stated.

    Being the official sponsors of football clubs, Real Madrid and Atlético de Madrid, Mahou India is continuing this passion for the game in India and is very keen on initiatives to promote football in the country.
     
    25.09.2017   UK: AB InBev introducing alcohol-free version of Budweiser in the UK    ( E-Malt.com )

    AB InBev has announced it is to introduce the alcohol-free version of Budweiser in the UK as part of the group’s expansion of its range of low-alcohol and no-alcohol beers, Bar Magazine reported on September 15.

    Budweiser Prohibition is brewed to the same recipe, with the same ageing process with beechwood and quality standards as the core beer, just without the alcohol.

    AB InBev said it would be introduced “later this year” in both the on-trade and retail. During the launch period, Budweiser Prohibition will be available in 330ml cans, with additional formats planned for next year.

    The name is inspired by the first batches of Budweiser being produced during US Prohibition in the 1920s.

    The announcement was made on September 15 as AB InBev celebrates its eighth annual Global Be(er) Responsible Day, which promotes smart drinking among the brewer’s staff and their consumers.

    In the UK, AB InBev’s portfolio already includes the market-leading alcohol-free beer Beck’s Blue and the lower-alcohol Bud Light, which arrived in the UK in March this year, brewed to 3.5% ABV.

    The expansion of this portfolio is part of AB InBev’s Global Smart Drinking Goals, where the brewer has pledged that 20% of all its beer volumes produced globally by 2025 will be low to no alcohol.

    As part of these goals, AB InBev also works closely with partners such as Drinkaware, the alcohol education charity, to promote responsible drinking.

    Low- and no-alcohol beer has become a major drinking trend in recent years, with figures released by research group Nielsen last month revealing that Britons consumed a record 18.2 million litres of low- and no-alcohol beer in the past year. Sales in the past 12 months across the category are up by 20% in value and 17% in volume.

    Jason Warner, president of AB InBev North Europe, said: “The no-alcohol beer category has been waiting for a major player to come in with something new and innovative and what better day to announce we’re bringing the King of Beers’ brother, Budweiser Prohibition, to the party than Global Be(er) Responsible Day?

    “As well as a great-tasting beer and iconic brand, it is a clear signal of our commitment to smart drinking. As part of our Global Smart Drinking Goals, we’re bringing great products to market so consumers can have more choice.”

    Rowan Chidgey, marketing manager at Budweiser UK, said: “Budweiser Prohibition is for those who love beer, who will never sacrifice on quality or taste and want to enjoy freely. After all, beer isn’t about alcohol; it’s about using the best, natural ingredients and brewing with passion. We can’t wait for the UK to try it later this year.”
     
    25.09.2017   UK: Beer giants marked as ‘threat to beer choice’ by CAMRA    ( E-Malt.com )

    Brewing behemoths such as AB InBev have been marked as a threat to beer choice by the Campaign for Real Ale’s (CAMRA) Good Beer Guide, the Morning Advertiser reported on September 14.

    Despite the number of UK breweries rising to more than 1,700, the persistent push by big brands to enter new and emerging segments of the market, such as craft, stifled choice, said the 2018 edition of the guide.

    Such a trend was cited by Sierra Nevada ambassador Steve Grossman at the recent Beavertown Extravaganza beer festival in London.

    He said: “In the past 20 years this industry has gone nuts. The big breweries have taken notice of this as the sales of their flagship beers started going down.

    “They didn't want to get into craft because the beer is expensive to make, but they had to try it, so they started making craft beer styles themselves, but the consumer didn't buy it.”

    However, Good Beer Guide editor Roger Protz, who recently announced he is to retire from the position, criticised AB InBev in particular for becoming too dominant in the marketplace.

    In a press release marking the launch of the 45 edition of the guide, Protz said: “While many consumers will not be aware that their favourite local beer has changed from looking at the bottle, the taste will invariably differ

    “Brewing changes under new ownership - whether this is due to long-term contracts with suppliers leading to grain or hop substitutions or because production methods are changed to maximise profits at the expense of taste.”

    AB InBev’s recent acquisitions of SAB Miller for £71 bln effectively gave the brewer 30% ownership of global beer production and sales, he said.

    Meanwhile, its acquisition of Camden Town Brewery for £85 mln, along with the unveiling of the brand’s giant new brewery in Enfield, could see what was a small craft brewery become London’s largest brewery.

    Protz added: “First Big Beer buys up a swathe of independent breweries. Now it’s attempting to control the natural ingredients used to make beer. The power of these global behemoths is frightening and has to be vigorously resisted.

    “CAMRA was first founded to challenge the handful of national brewers that had phased out good cask beer in order to promote fizzy keg beer, the quality of which would be laughed to scorn today.

    “I believe we are seeing a real threat to a return to those days – on a global scale. Big Beer is on the march, and we risk losing our wealth of choice to merely the illusion of it.”

    He continued: “Not only are consumers being misled, but these global brewers are changing the very character of the beers they buy and driving genuine independents out of business. It is most certainly the biggest single threat to consumer choice.”

    The editor warned the brewing and pub trade that the giants can afford to buy malt and hops supplies 40% cheaper than even big and medium-sized brewers can.

    As a result, small and medium-sized brewers face an increasing risk of being squeezed from the market, he warned.

    Low production costs, deep pockets for advertising and marketing and the ability to sell beer at cut-throat prices would help the giants further dominate the beer landscape.

    Society of Independent Brewers (SIBA) chief executive Mike Benner said: “The global brewers are seeking to capitalise on the growing consumer interest for flavoursome, independent craft beer, by buying out previously independent breweries or launching their own beers marketed as 'craft'.

    “However it is vitally important that beer drinkers are not misled, and are able to easily differentiate between beers produced by the Global brewers and those that are crafted by truly independent British breweries, in order to choose how and where they spend their money.”

    He added: “SIBA's 'Assured Independent British Craft Brewer' campaign was launched to do exactly this, with a specially designed logo for bottles, cans or pump clips making it crystal clear the beer was brewed by a genuine British independent craft brewery.”
     
    25.09.2017   United Arab Emirates: Craft beer being increasingly offered at Dubai’s bars and restaurants    ( E-Malt.com )

    At Dubai’s Black Tap restaurant, the Americana doesn’t stop at the hamburgers cooking on the grill or hip hop pumping from the speakers. It’s also being poured out, one pint at a time, The West Australian reported on September 19.

    The new restaurant stocks Dubai’s most-extensive selection of American craft beer, part of a major $US23.5 billion ($30 billion) market for customers wanting a different style of ale.

    It represents a new scene for Dubai, long known as the Manhattan of the Mid East, with chic skyscraper bars serving the fanciest of cocktails while the typical tap offers only the standard lagers.

    That’s starting to change, with establishments like Black Tap and Dubai’s two main distributors increasingly stocking American craft beer, breaking new ground among Gulf Arab nations, several of which ban alcohol sales entirely.

    “In such an eclectic city, we should have such an eclectic range of beers to accommodate instead of just the same beers that you can get all around the world,” said Eric Ballard, the group beverage manager for Sunset Hospitality, which runs Black Tap.

    For wine aficionados, teetotallers or those otherwise unaware, a craft brewery is a small, independent beer producer. After World War II, American beer production largely came from major companies. But by the end of the last century, more craft brewers began operations in the US.

    Craft beers account for about 15 per cent of sales in Australia. Despite the relatively small share, it is the only segment of the Australian beer market enjoying continuous growth.

    The sector grew an annualised 11.7 per cent over the five years to 2016-17, to total A$454 million, and is tipped to jump 6.5 per cent annually until 2022.

    It’s a similar story in the US. In 2016, craft beer sales represented about 12.3 per cent of all beer sales in America, according to the Brewers Association, a Colorado-based trade group. The beers come in a variety of styles from light to dark, though higher-alcohol content styles like hoppy India pale ales are a popular choice.

    “Your cans of High Life, your cans of PBR, while that’s cool during college, you want something that tastes a little better afterward,” said Ballard, referring to two mass-market American lagers.

    “You become a bit more discerning and your palate becomes a bit more defined.”

    That movement didn’t immediately take hold, however, in the United Arab Emirates, home to nearly 1500 bars and pubs, according the most recent count by research firm Euromonitor International. That may not seem like a large number of bars, until you consider Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iran ban the purchase of liquor and beer. Even neighbouring Sharjah, another of the UAE’s seven sheikhdoms, bans it.

    Liquor and beer sales help drive tourism to the UAE and particularly to Dubai, the home of the long-haul carrier Emirates, the world’s tallest building, an indoor ski slope and a number of architectural marvels. Dubai also takes in a 30 per cent tax on every drink sold.

    Even so, Dubai primarily has been known as a mass-market suds and cocktail town up to this point.

    “An increasing number of professional mixologists are relocating to Dubai due to its developing cocktail landscape,” Euromonitor recently said.

    “Consumers patronising restaurants and bars are increasingly aware of this and are willing to learn how to pair their food.”

    Dubai is home to several successful bars focusing on Belgian beers, a big hit among its European expatriate community.

    However, Heineken lager still dominates beer sales in the UAE. The Dutch brewer holds a 20 per cent market share of alcohol sales by volume overall, according to Euromonitor. But it too may be concerned about the rise of craft. It recently introduced a specialty beer called H41 in Dubai after putting it in select markets in Europe.

    Shipping the specialty brews can be a challenge. Among the newest beers on tap at Black Tap are two from Rogue Ales, a Newport, Oregon-based craft brewer some 12,250km away from Dubai, the only location it sells to in the Mid East. It ships its kegs of Dead Guy Ale and American Amber Ale by refrigerated containers and keeps them cold in warehouses on arrival to ensure their quality.

    “2017 was the right time to launch the brand in the area,” Rogue’s President Brett Joyce said in a statement. “We’re excited to be in the Dubai market.”

    But discussing alcohol even in Dubai remains tricky in part over concerns about Islamic propriety. Dubai’s two main alcohol importers, the Emirates Group’s Maritime and Mercantile International and Rogue partner African & Eastern, did not respond to repeated requests. Both now sell American craft beer.

    Radio announcers refer to bottles of “bubbly” or “grape” being on hand for the extravagant Friday brunches at luxury hotels for which Dubai is known. Lifestyle magazines routinely feature lifeless, empty pictures of new nightclubs with liquor bottles carefully hidden from view.

    At Black Tap, however, Emiratis in traditional robes regularly enjoy meals or massive milkshakes, mixing into the late-night crowds of beer drinkers. Sunset Hospitality has hopes to expand Black Tap into other countries in the Gulf, including those where it would only be a restaurant due to alcohol restrictions, Ballard said.

    “We want to create this movement of American craft that’s happening all over the world and then bring it to such a multicultural city, such as Dubai,” said Ballard, who considers his hometown to be Granby, Colorado.

    “People are looking for flavours, they are looking for something different.”
     
    22.09.2017   Vetropack: Record sales in the first half of 2017    ( Company news )

    Company news At 2.58 billion units of glass packaging (2016: 2.51 billion units), Vetropack Group once again achieved record sales in the first half of the year under review. In nominal terms, net sales remained stable. After adjusting for currency effects, however, they rose by 1.2% to CHF 314.5 million.

    Consolidated net sales from goods and services remained virtually unchanged at CHF 310.2 million (2016: CHF 310.8 million), while net sales in local currencies climbed 1.2% to CHF 314.5 million. Glass packaging sales reached a record high of 2.58 billion units (2016: 2.51 billion units).

    Consolidated EBIT stood at CHF 30.3 million (2016: CHF 30.7 million). The drop in energy and raw material costs was offset by rising personnel expenses and depreciation. The EBIT margin amounted to 9.8% (2016: 9.9%).

    The consolidated semi-annual profit of CHF 24.7 million (2016: CHF 24.4 million) was up 1.2% on the previous year’s figure. Lower finance costs and exchange rate gains pushed the financial result up by CHF 1.2 million year on year, boosting the consolidated semi-annual profit.

    Cash flow rose to CHF 61.3 million (2016: CHF 57.3 million). The cash flow margin increased to 19.8% (2016: 18.4%).

    Outlook for the second half of 2017
    For the second half of 2017 Vetropack Group expects the market environment to remain favourable. There are increasing signs that the Ukrainian economy is stabilising but this is unlikely to filter down to the market yet in 2017. The furnace at Vetropack’s Ukrainian glassworks in Gostomel is scheduled for repairs in the second half of the year in addition to upgrades at other plants. These measures will require production downtime, which will have a slight impact on performance. Compared to the second half of 2016, when two furnaces were repaired, the forecast indicates a better performance.

    The Group is anticipating therefore a slight improvement in net sales and performance for the whole of the 2017 reporting year in comparison to 2016.
    (Vetropack AG)
     
    21.09.2017   Symrise Again Certified as a “Green Company”    ( Company news )

    Company news - Symrise fulfills all requirements for “Green Company” seal
    - Effective management to reduce environmental risks recognized in particular
    - Environmental performance up since first certification in 2013

    DQS CFS GmbH, the German Association for Sustainability, has again certified Symrise as a “Green Company.” In explaining its decision, the association stated that the fragrance and flavoring manufacturer satisfied the international requirements of the Global Conformance Program to the utmost. Symrise is therefore allowed to use the “Green Company” label over the next three years.

    DQS recognizes companies that actively and demonstrably minimize the negative effects of their economic activities on the environment as “Green Companies.” The audit focuses on the companies’ management systems, which are used to promote greater environmental friendliness in individual business units and reduce potential environmental risks. At Symrise, the audit involved the research and
    development unit as well as production and distribution of all of the company’s ingredients.

    Environmental Protection Along the Value Chain
    Symrise has been focusing its business strategy on sustainability for several years and has set itself high environmental standards. “We are delighted that the independent auditors at DQS have once again recognized this commitment,” said Hans Holger Gliewe, CSO of Symrise. The company is constantly pursuing environmental protection and resource conservation along the entire value chain to reduce negative environmental impacts. Cost reduction and increasing efficiency are closely linked to environmental management at Symrise, noted Gliewe. “The acknowledgment of our improved environmental performance since the last audit is additional encouragement to continue on the path we have taken.”

    Greater Consumer Safety with the Seal of Quality
    DQS awarded the “Green Company” label to Symrise for the first time in 2013 as it already met the international requirements of the Global Conformance Program back then. DQS CFS GmbH now handles all certification services related to sustainability and consumer safety within the international DQS Group. This year, it assumed certification duties. The comprehensive assessment spectrum, which
    involves around 50 standards and legal requirements, covers all the essential sustainability and safety requirements that are currently applied along the entire value chain.
    (Symrise AG)
     
    20.09.2017   European customers to benefit from American Glass Research's new Testing Laboratory in ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ...Delft, Netherlands

    Agr International has announced plans to establish a new testing laboratory in Delft, Netherlands. This lab will be part of Agr’s American Glass Research division. The laboratory is slated to open and be fully operational in October, 2017.

    The creation of this facility is part of Agr International’s global expansion and commitment to its customers, and particularly intended to provide European glass manufacturers and fillers with better access to American Glass Research services. The new location will offer flexibility and reduced turnaround times on projects, lower shipping cost with relation to samples and the availability of American Glass Research expertise within the local time zones.

    The new lab will provide many of the same services currently offered by American Glass Research in their Butler, PA, USA facility that are geared toward solving breakage issues, evaluating container designs and improving both the manufacturing and filling processes. Some of the services to be available initially at the Delft site include:
    -Performance testing of glass packaging
    -Proof-of-design testing
    -Fracture diagnosis
    -Dimensional evaluation
    -Analysis of label, decoration and closure issues
    -Evaluation of coating performance and analysis of coating issues
    -Audit of glass plant operations
    -Filling line audits
    -Glass technical consultancy

    In addition to providing European glass manufacturers and fillers with a range of testing and evaluation services, the new office will also offer a complete schedule of training seminars taught by the American Glass Research staff.

    The new Delft facility will encompass 5500 square feet of laboratory and office space. Nearly 70% of the facility will be dedicated to the fracture analysis, measurement and testing laboratory. The lab will house new, modern testing equipment, microscopes and measurement equipment.

    The Delft testing laboratory will be headed by Peter de Haan, AGR Senior Scientist, and a Dutch national, who is returning to the Netherlands following several years at the American Glass Research Butler, PA, USA facility. De Haan and his team of technicians have well over 40 years of experience in the glass industry, and they will have full access to American Glass Research resources worldwide.
    (AGR International Inc.)
     
    20.09.2017   New shareholder: Silverfleet Capital invests in Pumpenfabrik Wangen GmbH    ( Company news )

    Company news On 7 September 2017, PWangen Beteiligungs GmbH sold its shares in Pumpenfabrik Wangen to Silverfleet Capital, a pan-European private equity firm that specialises in buy-to-build strategies.

    Silverfleet Capital intends to support Pumpenfabrik Wangen to grow internationally and extend its reach into the company’s key target markets with its product portfolio. It also aims to establish Pumpenfabrik Wangen’s leading technologies and product innovations in other industries.

    The contract of sale is likely to be completed by mid-October 2017. At that time, Mr Halhuber and Dr Brunner will resign their roles as Managing Directors of Pumpenfabrik Wangen GmbH. Jürgen Demke will stay on as a Managing Director and will be joined by an experienced executive management team that will be responsible for implementing Pumpenfabrik Wangen’s international growth strategy.

    “Pumpenfabrik Wangen is a clear market leader with a strong product portfolio and R&D focus and is operating in an attractive market”, says Klaus Maurer, responsible partner at Silverfleet Capital. “We are excited by the prospect of working closely with the management team and using our experience in the manufacturing sector to help grow the company internationally and enable Wangen to achieve its full potential.”
    (Pumpenfabrik Wangen GmbH)
     
    19.09.2017   Bringing process monitoring to the next level    ( Company news )

    Company news Cyclically determined performance indicators are used to monitor and optimise injection moulding processes. In the past, the focus was on axle movements and the forces and times that these required. Today, iQ weight monitor goes one big step further. ENGEL's monitoring software generates performance indicators that provide direct information on the component quality to be expected. As of Fakuma 2017, iQ weight monitor will be one of the standard features on all ENGEL injection moulding machines.

    Photo: The respectively current performance indicators are clearly presented on the display of the CC300 control of the injection moulding machine. Traffic light colours indicate which values are within and which are outside of tolerance.

    In the development of iQ weight monitor, ENGEL's particular focus was on the filling of cavities. For the screw movement in the speed-regulated filling phase, the machine operator enters a starting position, a speed profile and a switchover point as target values. The machine control uses these to calculate a target value specification, which the injection regulator then fulfils as best as possible. In addition to the speed, the resulting injection pressure curve depends on the amount of melt in the screw vestibule, the flow properties of the material and the flow resistance along the jet, hot runner and cavity. Due to the many influencing factors, the injection pressure curve is characteristic to the respective application – and therefore unique. Fluctuations in one or several influencing factors that occur in practice affect the part quality as well as the pressure curve. Therefore, the pressure-time curve is suitable as an indirect quality monitor.

    Meaningful performance indicators

    iQ weight monitor provides three performance indicators for each shot: the injection volume, the change in viscosity of the melt and the congruence between the pressure curve and the reference curve.

    Since it is directly connected to the actual shot weight, injection volume is the key performance indicator. It takes into account that differences in the closing behaviour of the non-return valve result in more or less material being conveyed into the cavity.

    Change in viscosity, the second performance indicator, is meaningful because the viscosity determines the flow capacity of the melt, which in turn determines the injection volume. Viscosity changes can result from, for example, fluctuations in the batches of material, the percentage of recycled material content, the moisture content or changes in temperature.

    Thirdly, the congruence of the pressure curve provides valuable indications of the existence of other disrupting factors during injection moulding. For example, an extremely fluctuating value may indicate that the process is poorly adjusted or that a cold plug has formed in the nozzle.

    Small effort, huge benefit

    At the Fakuma 2017, from October 17 to 21 in Friedrichshafen, Germany, ENGEL will demonstrate how easy it is to fully utilise the potential of iQ weight monitor. At first, the operator optimises the process to the desired component quality as usual, and then starts the reference measurement with the push of a button. During the running process, the continuously calculated performance indicators can be monitored directly on the display of the CC300 control of the injection moulding, or, independent of location, through an MES.

    As iQ weight monitor already calculates the performance indicators in the course of injection, in case of deviation from the target values the system provides the opportunity to make corrections within the same cycle, thus proactively preventing rejects. ENGEL has also developed a software for this in-line regulation. iQ weight control adjusts the switchover point and the holding pressure profile to the respective state in each cycle, thus maintaining a consistent injection volume.

    How well iQ weight control can improve reproducibility depends on several factors. Naturally, processes that are already very stable in and of themselves can only be optimised to a lesser extent. In order to evaluate the additional effect that iQ weight control may have, iQ weight monitor provides the injection moulder with a very smart feature: it calculates the improvement potential achievable through iQ weight control.

    ENGEL at Fakuma 2017 Hall A5, booth 5204
    (Engel Austria GmbH)
     
    18.09.2017   7th GERMAN RUM FESTIVAL IN BERLIN    ( Company news )

    Company news It’s happening! On October 14 and 15, the wonderful world of rum is gathering again at the 7th GERMAN RUM FESTIVAL at STATION-Berlin, presenting the incredible and exciting variety of rum, rhum and Cachaça.

    Rum is no longer just some pirate swill! In the last few years, the spirit distilled from sugar cane juice or molasses has proven to be a formidable competitor with any other spirit, and with regard to variety even superior. With more than 400 different rums to taste we’re presenting the entire range, among them many novelties. Lovers of luxury as well as those seeking the exclusive and rare will surely find what they’re looking for.

    Extensive tasting choices in three newly designed areas, a cigar lounge, and the food court top off the experience.

    Additionally, trade visitors have the opportunity to experience a special highlight as early as Friday before the festival: the first ever GERMAN RUM SYMPOSIUM! Seven producers will share their combined knowledge with us and offer us in-depth insight into the rum production.

    On Sunday we’ll hold the first live cocktail competition, the GERMAN RUM AWARDS. Ten finalists will compete with each other; may the best one win.
    (SPIRIT OF RUM EVENT GmbH)
     
    18.09.2017   More than 76,000 visitors—drinktec 2017 smashes all the records!    ( drinktec 2017 )

    drinktec 2017 - Record number of exhibitors as well
    - Internationality expands again
    - The world’s most important innovation and investment platform

    With over 76,000 visitors from more than 170 countries, drinktec has chalked up the best-ever result in its 66-year history and surpassed all expectations. The number of visitors rose by 10,000 over the previous event in 2013. In particular at the international level, where drinktec is already very strong as it is, the trade fair was able to grow attendance again, this time by 12 percent. The ratio of visitors from outside Germany thus rose to 67 percent. The number of exhibitors increased to 1,749 from 80 countries—likewise a new record. That is mainly attributable to the wine technology trade fair SIMEI, which was held as part of drinktec for the first time, as well as further growth in the number of exhibitors at drinktec itself.

    “World’s most important innovation platform”
    In view of these record figures, Dr. Reinhard Pfeiffer, Deputy CEO of Messe München, spoke of an “outstanding result. drinktec has proven itself to be not only the world’s most important innovation platform in the industry, but also the most important investment platform. The cooperation with the wine technology trade fair SIMEI is a tremendous gain. I’m especially delighted that exhibitors here at SIMEI obviously encountered the international audience they expected.”

    “The best drinktec ever”
    The verdict of Volker Kronseder, President of drinktec’s Advisory Board and Chairman of the VDMA’s Beverage Machinery and Dairy Technology Association, after the five-day fair was also extremely positive: “For me, it was the best drinktec ever. Particularly interesting aspects were that SIMEI was integrated in drinktec for the first time and a new record for the number of exhibitors was set. We were able to achieve a high degree of internationality again, with many high-ranking visitors. This trade fair will give the global beverage and food industry a major boost for the next four years.”

    “Expectations surpassed”
    Richard Clemens, Managing Director of the VDMA’s Food Processing and Packaging Machinery Association, was also enthusiastic: “drinktec once again surpassed our high expectations. We’re over the moon at the international spread and expertise of the visitors! drinktec is a trend-setter: Visitors’ focus was on innovative solutions for tomorrow’s applications.”

    Ernesto Abbona, President of Unione Italiana Vini (UIV), drew the following conclusion for his association: “We’re very proud that SIMEI has transcended its national boundaries and, together with drinktec, has opened the door to internationalization for our companies. I’ve spoken with a number of our exhibitors over the past days and they all agreed that the trade fair was a success. We were able to address new target groups from the southern hemisphere who we would otherwise probably not have been able to reach. As expected, the grape harvest reduced the number of winemakers who attended from some European and North American countries.”

    drinktec exhibitors: “The trade fair to beat them all”
    Exhibitors gave a first-class verdict of drinktec 2017, stressing the outstanding importance of the trade fair for the entire industry (see also “Exhibitor testimonials on drinktec 2017”). KHS Chairman, Prof. Dr. Ing. Matthias Niemeyer, regards drinktec as a platform “for the whole industry and experts worldwide. drinktec offers exhibitors perfect conditions for showcasing products and innovations.” Christoph Klenk, CEO of KRONES, spoke for many of his colleagues when he said: “All in all, drinktec is for KRONES the trade fair to beat them all. We’re very satisfied.” In the view of Gianfranco Zoppas, Chairman of SIPA, drinktec is the “benchmark for our industry. We’re extremely satisfied, not only with the number, but also with the quality of our visitors.” Dr. Rainer Brambach from EnviroChemie stated: “drinktec manages to bring together movers and shakers from all over the world—this concentration is unique for us.”

    “SIMEI in Munich is a gain”
    The fact that interest among visitors for wine, sparkling wine and spirits doubled (the number of mentions rose to 17,480) was mainly due to the exhibition area for SIMEI. This first-ever cooperation between drinktec and SIMEI was also rated positively by exhibitors at SIMEI. Marzio Dal Cin, President of Anformape (National Association of Machinery Suppliers and Products for Winemaking), summed up the feedback from his members who exhibited there as follows: “The impression among SIMEI’s exhibitors is very good for the most part. The presence of many international visitors, in particular from the southern hemisphere, is a very positive aspect and the reason why the companies believe in this project.” Cristina Bertolaso from the company of the same name expressed a similar opinion: “SIMEI in Munich is a gain because it has brought us a lot of new potential customers. We’re ready to conquer new markets.” Carlo Gai, the head of GAI, noted: “Italian wine technology is respected worldwide and we should definitely seize the opportunity to present it to such a large international audience.”

    Success for oils+fats—higher attendance from the liquid food segment
    The decision to integrate oils+fats, Europe’s only trade fair for the production and further processing of vegetable and animal oils and fats, in drinktec was a resounding success. 49 exhibitors from 16 countries presented themselves in Hall C1. The synergies with drinktec were primarily in the area of liquid food, where often similar machinery and components are used. The combination of drinktec and oils+fats met with a positive response from trade visitors, as also evidenced by the number of visitors from the liquid food segment: an increase from 8,700 to 10,700 or 22 percent.

    PRO FachHANDEL
    PRO FachHANDEL, the leading trade fair for the entire German convenience and specialized beverage industry, was also held as part of drinktec 2017 for the first time. As a result, drinktec forged links with the specialized beverage sector.

    The top event for visitors from all over the world
    In particular the number of visitors from overseas is testimony to the fact that drinktec is a worldwide event and is rightly regarded as the industry’s global economic summit. The number of visitors from China was more than 2,000, an increase of 65 percent. That means China already occupies second spot in the rankings of the top 10 countries of origin for visitors—behind Italy, which likewise recorded a sharp increase thanks to SIMEI: by around 45 percent to 5,240 visitors. There was also a striking rise in attendance from South America. SIMEI apparently helped boost the number of visitors from Argentina to 545 (an increase of 165 percent). 1,100 visitors came from Brazil, a rise of 40 percent. France, likewise a wine country, came fourth this year with 1,800 visitors. Apart from Italy, China and France, other countries in the top ten were Russia (1,857 visitors), the UK (1,619), the U.S. (1,570), Austria (1,567), Spain (1,254) and the Netherlands (1,221).

    Top marks for the supporting program
    As in previous years, drinktec again earned outstanding plaudits from visitors. Almost all of them (97 percent) rated the trade fair as “excellent to good” and 96 percent intend to return in 2021. The new exhibition areas also went down well. 88 percent of visitors voiced a positive opinion about SIMEI@drinktec and 93 percent praised the Home&Craft area. The numerous events in the supporting program—the networking platforms, awards, and the conferences and forums—also met with overwhelming approval. Brewers from all over the world were drawn, for example, to Place2beer, an attractive port of call for craft brewers in particular. One-in-five of all brewers who visited drinktec came from that segment. The Innovation Flow Lounge, which was created in 2013 especially for visitors from the fields of sales and marketing, attracted around 1,000 interested attendees from all over the world. The drinktec Forum in Hall A2 was also well-attended, recording around 1,300 visitors.
    (Messe München GmbH)
     
    15.09.2017   ENGEL at T-Plas 2017 in Bangkok    ( Company news )

    Company news Low costs per unit and high quality – the packaging industry has particularly high demands and must also adapt flexibly to the various requirements of the individual national markets. With the help of tailored system solutions, ENGEL supports its customers in mastering these challenges and securing competitive advantages. At the T-Plas 2017, September 20 to 23 in Bangkok, Thailand, the Austria-based injection moulding machine builder and systems solution provider will demonstrate what this can look like in practice. One important building block in achieving high efficiency is the digitalisation and networking of production processes, for which ENGEL already has several mature solutions to offer.

    Photo: Thanks to in-mould-labelling technology, food containers come out of the ENGEL e-mac 180 injection moulding machine ready-to-fill.

    "The packaging industry is one of the especially fast-growing sectors in South East Asia, and is one of the innovation drivers at the same time", states Romain Reyre, President South East Asia for ENGEL. "There is hardly another sector in which the per unit cost is under higher pressure than in the packaging industry." Competitive production is only possible when the highest throughputs, a stable process and a high degree of process integration come together. To allow, for example, ready-to-fill food containers to come directly out of the injection moulding machine, an increasing number of processors are turning to in-mould labelling technology (IML). IML makes high-quality decoration economical and also allows for the efficient production of smaller batch sizes. In order to take full advantage of the efficiency potential of IML integration, the injection moulding machine, the mould and the handling of the labels and finished products must be perfectly coordinated with each other. To this end, ENGEL has developed a worldwide network of partner companies.

    For the production of oval bowls – used, for example, for convenience meals –, the e-mac 440/180 injection moulding machine presented at the T-Plas works with Asian partners who are also well familiar with the requirements of local producers and translate these into optimally tailored solutions. The 4-cavity mould comes from CNN Plastic System, based in New Taipei City, Taiwan. The IML-automation is implemented by JET Engine Automation – also based in New Taipei City. "The collaboration with local partners makes it possible for us to guarantee high cost-efficiency for our customers, even for very sophisticated, innovative technologies, and to also keep the delivery times for the complete production cell short," emphasises Reyre.

    High productivity requires a reliable and high-performing injection moulding machine. The all-electric e-mac is exclusively equipped with especially powerful servo drives. Ejection and pressing is also handled servo-electrically. This guarantees the best possible precision and process stability while maximising the effectiveness of the machine as a whole. The highly energy-efficient machine ensures a stable production, even at continuous, round-the-clock operation.

    Self-optimising injection moulding machine
    With the CC300 control, the e-mac provides full flexibility for the integration of robots and other peripherals, as well as the use of intelligent assistance systems from the inject 4.0 programme of ENGEL.

    inject 4.0 – this is the response of ENGEL to the challenges of the fourth industrial revolution, for which the name Industry 4.0 has become established. The goal is a smart factory in which production processes continuously self-optimise through the networking of production systems, the systematic use of machine, process and production data, and the utilisation of intelligent assistance systems. Producers can thus increase the productivity and quality of their production and respond very flexibly to ever more rapidly changing requirements.

    ENGEL already offers an entire range of mature products for digitalisation and networking that have been proven in practice again and again, and is continuously expanding its line-up. The modularity of the inject 4.0 approach makes it especially easy for plastics processors to take advantage of the opportunities offered by Industry 4.0. Even small isolated solutions provide huge benefits.

    In Bangkok, the e-mac injection moulding machine makes this impressively clear. Equipped with the iQ weight control system, it detects fluctuations in the environmental conditions and in the raw material, and automatically compensates for these shot by shot. Throughout the entire process, it maintains a consistent melt volume, thereby preventing the production of rejects.

    ENGEL is presenting two more assistance systems in Bangkok: iQ clamp control and iQ flow control. While iQ clamp control calculates the mould breathing in order to determine the optimal clamping force and automatically adjust it, iQ flow control optimises the mould temperature control. To achieve this, the software connects the electronic temperature control water manifold e-flomo with the temperature control unit, and is thereby able to continuously adjust the pump speed to the actual requirement. This results in even higher energy efficiency.

    Minimising downtime
    In order to increase the availability of machines and productions cells, inject 4.0 relies on online support, remote maintenance, and predictive, condition-based maintenance. e connect.24 is the online support and remote maintenance tool through which ENGEL customers can send an emergency call for help to their machine builder partner at any time of the day or night. Via a remote connection, the ENGEL specialists immediately begin to look for the cause. In many cases, they can help directly over the internet, saving the processor a time-intensive and possibly expensive on-site visit by a service-technician. In this way, down times are minimised.

    With e-connect.monitor, ENGEL even makes it possible to inspect the condition of process-critical components such as plasticising screws during operation and to establish a reliable prognosis of their remaining useful life. With this condition-based, predictive maintenance, the useful life of machine components can be fully utilised without entailing the risk of unplanned system downtime.

    Capacity increased for South East Asia
    In order to be able to fulfil the specific requirements of plastics processors in the extremely dynamic developing markets of South East Asia in an even more targeted fashion, in the autumn of last year ENGEL further developed its sales structure in South East Asia. The responsibility for the individual subsidiaries and representative offices was combined, and Romain Reyre was appointed as President South East Asia. At the same time, the service team was reinforced and a regional hub for the supply of spare parts was opened. For the first time, ENGEL South East Asia now has its own service manager with cross-national responsibility, who is based in Bangkok. "The new structure is showing results", reports Reyre. "Over the past months, we were able to further strengthen our position in South East Asia."

    On the whole, ENGEL's growth in Asia is especially robust. Among other factors, the machine builder has the consistent investments into its regional sales and service subsidiaries and production plants to thank for this continued success. ENGEL is the only European injection moulding machine builder producing injection moulding machines at three locations in Asia – in China and Korea – and can therefore guarantee its customers short delivery times, fast service, and the flexible adjustment of products and system solutions to regional requirements. The e-mac injection moulding machine presented at the T-Plas was also produced in Asia, at the plant for small and medium-sized machines in Pyungtaek City, Korea.

    Since it was founded in 1945, ENGEL has been 100 percent family-owned and independent of external investors, thus guaranteeing both customers and employees stability and a long-term perspective. In the 2016/2017 financial year, ENGEL achieved sales of more than 1.36 bn Euros. ENGEL employs more than 6,000 people worldwide.

    ENGEL at T-Plas 2017: Hall 102, booth T01
    (Engel Austria GmbH)
     
    14.09.2017   Salla Estate: Heraldic label with a modern twist    ( Company news )

    Company news ​Salla Estate is a Bulgarian winery located close to the medieval Muhaliysko Kale fortress which is full of artifacts dating all the way back to the Stone and Middle Ages. Labelmaker Jordan Jelev, designer of the Salla Estate wine label, was inspired by the history and tradition of the area and wanted to create a heraldic label with a modern twist.

    “Salla Estate is a winery where tradition meets modernity in every aspect. I decided to create a modern heraldic label that would represent the past, present and future,” Jelev says.

    For the label, Jelev chose UPM Raflatac’s Velmart White WSA-FSC material because he wanted a thick classic paper with elegant random texture to strengthen the traditional feel he was aiming for. He also used saturated gold hot-foil to stamp the Salla Estate logo.

    “Influenced and inspired by heraldic tradition and modern design, I created a pattern with diagonal lines printed directly and raised varnish against the paper background. I did some research for the lines’ thickness and spacing and the result was amazing. These lines made the whole label shine and they were the perfect addition to the paper background creating the best environment for the logo. The label is very elegant and contains only the most important information,” Jelev says.
    (UPM Raflatac Oy)
     
    13.09.2017   For Secure, Hygienic Connections     ( Company news )

    Company news Clamp seals guarantee fast and extremely secure tube connections in machines that are operated continuously. They are especially easy to install and re-separate. At drinktec 2017, Freudenberg Sealing Technologies is presenting its newly developed clamp seals, which not only reliably seal tube connections in production facilities – they also eliminate the costly conversion of connections to a “hygiene flange,” in accordance with DIN 11864. Unwanted over-compression into the interior space is prevented, guaranteeing secure, hygienic tube connections.

    Conventional clamp seals have no predefined compression. The result is that a portion of the clamp seal protrudes into the interior of the tube connection when a flange connection is sealed. With the lack of guidelines for tightening torque and depending on the amount of force used during mounting, the sealing element is more or less highly compressed. The part of the seal protruding into the product space not only reduces the internal diameter of the tube. It also prevents complete cleaning, a critical factor in the food and process industries. If part of the seal protrudes into the interior space, difficult-to-clean dead spaces are formed, and bacteria can accumulate there. In the worst case, this leads to product contamination. The flow of media can also lead to seal damage. There is also the danger that protruding parts of the seal could be torn off and enter the product.

    The new clamp seal from Freudenberg Sealing Technologies was developed for tube connections in accordance with DIN 32676, ASME BPE or ISO 2852. Its structure has clear differences from those of conventional seals: Thanks to a plastic part incorporated inside it, it has a defined stop, preventing unwanted extrusion into the line’s interior due to the impact of the excessive force. The seal closes almost flush with tube, so the internal diameter of the seal remains precisely the dimension of the tube’s internal diameter. Mounting errors are precluded as a result. The costly conversion of all connections to the “hygiene flange” in accordance with DIN 11864 can be avoided with the use of the clamp seal with stop. An additional binding agent – which is necessary with metal, for instance – is not required with the use of plastic as the stop. When it comes to hygiene, this new development is a major advance: the risk of contamination of an entire product batch is reduced thanks to the flush closure.

    Freudenberg Sealing Technologies is presenting these and other innovations, along with its established, tried-and-tested products, for the food and process industries in Hall A3, Stand 239, at drinktec 2017 in Munich (Germany). The company's experts are looking forward to strong attendance at the stand.
    (Freudenberg Process Seals GmbH & Co. KG)
     
    13.09.2017   SIDEL SERVICES ONLINE PROVIDES TANGIBLE BENEFITS FOR ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ... LEADING SWEDISH BEVERAGE PRODUCER

    Spendrups Brewery, among Sweden’s leading beverage companies, is recognising the benefits of sourcing and purchasing spare parts through the Sidel Services Online platform. Since the launch of the web interface in September 2016, Spendrups has been using it to optimise its preventive maintenance plans.

    Founded in 1897, Spendrups Bryggeri AB is today the biggest, family-owned, independent brewery in Sweden - and the most prominent, with some 98% of its business conducted in its home market. The company is the second largest supplier to Sweden’s Systembolaget - the government-owned chain of liquor stores - and supplies many of the country’s restaurants, catering businesses and grocery retailers with a large portfolio consisting of beer, wine, spirits, bottled water, cider and soft drinks. With three breweries in Sweden, it is the leading distributor of beer in the country and, through its subsidiary Spring Wine & Spirits, supplies wines and spirits to restaurants and Systembolaget. Spendrups is also a market leading wine importer, offering 350 references from 75 different producers based in 13 countries. Over the years, the Group has built up successful beer brands such as Norrlands Guld Melleruds and Mariestads, as well as the sparkling water brand Loka. The company currently employs approximately 900 people and produces around 4 million hectolitres of beverages every year.

    Shorter lead times for spare parts ordering
    Sidel is an important contributor to Spendrups’ installed base of beverage production lines operating at two of the company’s facilities: a water production site in Hällefors and, more recently, an ultra-clean line in Grängesberg. The company orders spare parts on a weekly basis and undertakes a major maintenance overhaul of its lines every year, stopping production for one week. Before they started using Sidel Services Online, Spendrups had to search for spare parts from traditional hard copy drawings of Sidel equipment through Sidel’s experts via telephone or email, to then place the spare parts’ orders manually. Consequently, the whole process took from 3 to 4 days. Today using Sidel Services Online has significantly reduced lead times on original spare parts’ orders, squeezing it to a couple of hours. Martin Öling, Maintenance Manager at Spendrups, comments - “Working with the State monopoly involves higher constraints, therefore gaining internally in lead times and agility gives us a nice advantage. Today we can check spare parts’ availability in real time and get quicker answers on delivery times. Overall it is a very good system because of the immediate access to equipment technical drawings, spare parts’ lists, availability and prices. So, compiling your order and sourcing exactly the right spare parts is definitely easy. With just a couple of clicks, you can put your original spare parts in your basket.” Ease of use was a fundamental requirement for Sidel in developing the system, a point recognised by Öling who continues: “Some 10 people within Spendrups can today place orders through Sidel Services Online. We received training on it from Sidel experts, although the platform is so user friendly that it allows us to self-learn.”

    Optimised planning and budgeting for increased line availability
    Today, besides ease of spare parts ordering, Spendrups - an early adopter of the Sidel Services Online web interface - can also better plan its line overhauls from a budgeting perspective. Real time information on parts’ prices and availability allows for a more effective planning of critical spare parts ordering, thereby optimising line availability. With intelligent management of spare parts, it is now possible for Spendrups to significantly reduce costs arising from unexpected stoppages and unplanned downtime, thus contributing to extending the lifecycle of Sidel equipment. Öling comments – “We are very satisfied with Sidel Services Online and happy to continue using it, as it fulfils all the company’s needs, allowing us to plan more accurately over the equipment lifecycle.”
    (Sidel International AG)
     
    12.09.2017   At Pack Expo 2017, Agr will feature its 3-step approach to simplified blowmolder managment ...    ( Company news )

    Company news ...for PET bottles

    At the 2017 Pack Expo show, Agr International, Inc. will be in booth 6727 featuring its Process Pilot blowmolder management system for managing the production and quality of PET beverage containers as well as its latest developments for shelf-life control and container testing.

    Innovative blowmolder management
    The Process Pilot® automated blowmolder management system was designed to simplify the production of PET bottles is ideal for PET bottle converters and beverage producers that self-manufacture PET bottles yet have limited manpower to oversee blowmolder operations on a continuous basis. The Process Pilot product group offers precise material thickness distribution management on PET bottles, while offering hands-off blowmolder control. With the trend towards ever lighter bottles, the Process Pilot system offers producers the ability to aggressively light weight bottles to the absolute minimum while providing the confidence that material is distributed, with the proper thickness in all critical areas, on every bottle produced.

    The Process Pilot system offers a simple three-step approach towards PET blowmolder management:
    -Step 1 – Measure material distribution and pearlescence on every bottle
    -Step 2 – Control the blowmolder to overcome process variation and maintain on-target material distribution
    -Step 3 – Optimize the process to suit the product, application or business objective of the production facility

    Not only does this product simplify and stabilize the production of PET bottles, but it also provides the versatility to manage bottle production in a manner most suitable to the product and application. Whether the goal is to make the lightest bottle possible, process preforms of mixed lineage or material quality, improve bottle shelf-life and performance characteristics, save energy or just run a stable process 24/7, the Process Pilot product group offers a means to realize this goal profitably and with confidence.

    Agr International offers a number of products designed to assist container producers, converters and fillers stay competitive while meeting the increased quality demands of today’s changing world. Agr staff will be on hand at Pack Expo 2017, Booth 6727, to discuss their latest developments in the line of blowmolder management products as well as the complete line quality management products that include pressure testing, shelf-life, thickness measurement and dimensional gauging systems for plastic and glass containers.
    (AGR International Inc.)
     
    12.09.2017   Australia: Carlton & United Breweries to reduce alcohol content in some of its ...    ( E-Malt.com )

    ... mid- and low-strength beers

    Carlton & United Breweries (CUB) has said it is aiming to meet the growing demands of consumers who want to moderate their drinking, by reducing the ABV in some of its mid and low-strength beers, The Shout reported on September 1.

    Carlton Mid, Cascade Premium Light and VB Gold, will all see their ABV reduced, although the brewer has said it has no plans to alter the strength of its mid-strength juggernaut Great Northern.

    A CUB spokesperson said the decision was made to go ahead with the lower ABV beers when the brewers said they could make the change without impacting flavour.

    “We have heard from consumers that for many low and mid-strength beer drinkers the alcohol content is less important than the flavour of the beer and its value. Our brewers are now able to reduce the alcohol by volume of these beers without compromising flavour, while continuing to offer consumers good value for money.”

    The reduction of the ABV will mean the brewer can negate the impact of the CPI increase on beer and keep offering these popular products at a value price-point.

    The changes will see Carlton Mid go from 3.5 per cent to 3.0 per cent, Cascade Premium Light will reduce from 2.6 per cent to 2.4 per cent and VB Gold will go from 3.5 per cent to 3.0 per cent.

    According to the Australian Liquor Stores Association and IRI 2017 State of the Industry Report, mid-strength beer has been a key contributor to the growth of the overall beer category. Mid-strength beer accounted for 16 per cent of dollar growth for the beer category and is also a primary driver of the volume in the category.

    The CUB spokesperson added: “Consumer trends have been shifting towards accessing products with lower alcohol by volume, which are provided by the low and mid-strength beer range.”

    CUB has previously had some issues with lowering the ABV of its beers, most famously when it reduced the strength of its iconic Victoria Bitter, but with the brewer saying mid-strength consumers are more focused on flavour rather than strength, it will be hopeful of avoiding a similar consumer backlash that it experienced with VB, where it back-tracked and reverted to the old recipe.
     


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