Labor costs — and how to reduce them — remain as critical of an issue as ever for small and intermediate bakeries and foodservice manufacturers whose business depends on the efficiency and reliability of packaging equipment they rely on every day. Efficiency in the packaging of breads is paramount to holding labor costs down, and equipment manufacturers know this as they continue to innovate and bring upgrades and new equipment to the marketplace. Perhaps most of all, small and intermediate bakeries that do a sizeable amount of bread wholesaling are looking for one machine, perhaps two, that can handle just about everything they need.
“Regarding automation, bakers of all sizes typically try to push as much product as they can through the minimum equipment required to save money,” says Mitch Lindsey, technical sales at Burford Corp. “Which, for Burford, means for any size of bakery we have to be able to tie packages at the bakery’s max capacity. And we like to stay above that margin, so we are not the bottleneck.”
For smaller bakeries that are currently packaging by hand, Burford offers the Entry Level Tyer System (model EL54C), which helps to automate the tying process and eliminate labor. With the Entry Level Twist Tyer System, packages are simply placed onto the conveyor and from that point on the feeding and tying process is automated. Burford Corp.’s Model EL54C Entry Level twist tyer allows small to mid-size bakers and snack manufacturers the ability to move into a semi-automated packaging operation.
For optimal performance a minimum bag thickness of 1.25mil is required. It is designed to be used with manual or semi-automatic bag loaders to improve the efficiency of the bakery packaging process.
For the mid- to large size bakery, Burford continues to provide quality equipment in either the Servo tyer or Smart Servo tyer series. The 2000 Servo Tyer model offers automatic timing, modular design, package recognition, and easy threading. The new 2200M series Smart Servo Twist Tyer features critical components designed to last even longer. And because each closure uses less ribbon, the 2000M series reduces your consumable costs as well.
“Burford is well known in the industry for its quality equipment and customer service,” Lindsey says. “It’s a machine they can trust.”
Other equipment manufacturers offer a host of updated packaging features and new innovations.
Kwik Lok’s new KLC-S Slicer line, a semiautomatic slicing and packaging line for sliced and unsliced bread, offers versatility beyond wrapping. It features continuous rotating angled blades that pull the loaves through the system for improved slice quality. Meanwhile, the slicer is also equipped with a bag blower for easy opening of plastic or paper pre-made wicket bags. It also features an in-line Kwik Lok bag closing system.
Engineered to increase productivity, the Kwik Lok 872XLS Automatic Bag Closing Machine incorporates an electronic sensor that determines the width of the bag and then actuates the bag closing cycle. Bag recognition permits the 872XLS to close a wide range of bag widths without adjustments. The Spring Release Pick Feed prevents bag closure jamming if the package (or its contents) is improperly delivered to the closing head.
The 872XLS enables the packager to close bagged packages at speeds up to 110 per minute. The system will close a wide variety of product size variations. Striplok closures are available in many closure opening sizes to accommodate a large number of bag widths and film thicknesses. The 872XLS features variable speed control and a manual cycle button. The 872XLS can be installed on all automatic bagging machines or on conveyors for hand bagging operations.
Kwik Lok also offers several models of conveyors, mounts, and special bagger take-off systems that will adapt the closing head to nearly all types of bagging operations.