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The most important piece of the entire bottling line is without a doubt the Bottle filling Machine. This component is the only machine that has direct contact with the finished product and must therefore ensure maximum reliability in terms of hygiene and quality of the end product. This means preserving it’s the product’s characteristics during the filling phase and being easy to clean or when in contact with products that are particularly sensitive to contamination, being easily sterilized.

 

During the filling phase, liquid products to be packaged can be foamy, dense, creamy, fluid, powder or granules. They are delivered in special package types such as bottles, vials, pots, jars, cans, tanks, buckets, tins, bags, sacks or bag-in-boxes.

 

There are different filling processes (negative pressure, gravity, isobaric) that utilize different types of fillers, including volumetric fillers with batching syringes, gravity fillers with electronic or mechanical weighing units, and negative pressure fillers at constant levels (suitable only for very rigid recipients). The machines are set and calibrated to help ensure flawless operation and exceptional precision.

 

Frequently, new juice bar or wholesale juice business owners ask about investing in an automated bottle filler. I purchased a two-head, table-top bottle filler for our juicing kitchen a while ago to stock it as part of our product line. After some time I learned that it probably doesn’t make sense for a small juice business to invest in a bottle filler until you’re filling thousands of bottles per day. I’ll explain why below. If you’ve had a different experience, let our readers know in the comments.

 

Labour Cost

Intuitively, one would think that labour costs go down after implementing a bottle-filling machine. I was surprised to learn that that’s most likely not the case for a small operation. The small bottle fillers are of the “semi-automatic” type. The user stands near the filler, manually places bottles under the spouts, and presses a foot pedal to initiate the filling process. The filling machine then fills the bottles. Once the process is done, the user moves the full bottles to the side and puts new bottles under the spouts and starts the process again.

Essentially what this means is that you still need a person working full-time to fill bottles, and it isn’t going to be much (if at all) faster. A skilled employee can fill hundreds of bottles per hour with a pitcher of juice and a funnel for filling the bottles without the help of a machine.

Part of the reason that we can fill juice bottles so quickly by hand is that the standard cold-pressed juice bottles we use tend to be easy to fill. A 12 Oz or 16 Oz bottle with a wide mouth is very easy to pour into with a funnel. You can line up 20 empty bottles and just go right down the line pouring into them. If the bottle you chose had a small opening, it may make more sense to use a machine.

Another point regarding labor costs is that the filling machine system must be cleaned regularly which adds a step to your daily juicing process.

 

Waste

Since a bottle filler requires tanks and tubing/hoses to work, there will be some juice left in the system when you’re finished filling bottles. There’s simply no way to get it out other than to flush the system with water, which mixes with the juice and becomes a by-product that needs to be discarded or re-purposed. The system also has to be cleaned, which adds extra labour to your daily juicing process.

 

When it makes sense to buy a bottle filler?

At some point, it makes sense to invest in an automated filling line. When your business is big enough to justify spending $200k on a fully automated filling line, you will see massive savings in labor and that investment will pay for itself in a very short amount of time.

Imagine going from 4-5 full-time employees filling thousands of bottles per day down to a single person only spending part of their time operating the bottle filler, while they spend the rest of their time managing other parts of the operation. There will still be some wasted product which is unfortunate, but the wasted juice is proportionally a much smaller amount when dealing with large volumes and the cost is minimal.

Automation in the packaging process creates many benefits for the packaging company.  This week we will analyze individual pieces of packaging equipment and explain some of these benefits.
The automatic liquid filler moves the product from a holding tank to the waiting bottles or other containers without the need for operator interaction during each fill cycle.  In automating the filling process, a company can expect to improve the packaging operation in several ways, including, but not limited to, the following.

1.  Consistent and Reliable Fills

Using an automatic filler removes the uncertainty from the filling process.  Whether looking for a level fill, a highly accurate volumetric fill or using some other specific criteria, the automatic machine ensures that each cycle is completed in the same manner.  Consistency and reliability that simply cannot be had by hand-filling bottles or containers are easily achievable with the right machine for each project.

2.  Speed

Once production demand reaches a certain level, it simply becomes unrealistic to hire manual labour to complete each bottle fill.  Probably the most obvious benefit of using automatic packaging machinery is the ability of the machinery to increase speeds.  Using power conveyors and multiple fill heads along with the proper filling principle allows production to not only run faster but run constantly.

3.  Versatility

Many companies use multiple bottles for a single product.  Several companies also run multiple products.  In most cases, a single liquid filler can be manufactured to handle all bottles and products packaged by a company.  Some machines will use simple adjustments to change from one bottle or product to another, while others might require a little more time on changeover where bottle sizes or product viscosity varies greatly from one to another.

4.  Ease of Use

Almost all automatic filling machinery will come equipped with a PLC and easy-to-use operator interface.  The interface uses a touchscreen that allows the operator to enter the various times and amounts necessary to complete each cycle.  Once the numbers are entered, a recipe screen will allow the same to be retained.  Eventually, the operator will simply need to enter the recipe number on the interface, make any physical adjustments (conveyor rails, fill head height, etc.) and then monitor the machine as it goes to work.

5.  Growth Potential

Automatic packaging machines can and should be manufactured with the future in mind.  In other words, the machine should not be manufactured to immediately meet maximum capacity.  At LPS, we build our equipment expecting our customers to experience growth!  Simple additions to filling machines, such as extra fill heads, allow the equipment to grow with the business.
While there are other benefits to automating the filling process from project to project, a packager can always expect to receive those noted above.  For more information on how automating packaging processes can benefit your unique project, contact our staff today.

Have you ever thought about how bottles, tubes, cans, and containers of all shapes and sizes are filled with their content? Well, there is no more magic! Filling machinery is being used by industries to fill every kind of container. Examples of Industries that use this type of machinery include:

 

  • Pharmaceutical Products
  • Food & Beverages (Sauces, Dairy, Beverages, Canned goods, and more)
  • Paint Related Products
  • Industrial Chemicals
  • Contract Packaging
  • Distilleries and many more!

 

Do They All Serve the Same Purpose?

 

The different types of filling machines, capping mahines, and other similar machines are as diverse as the products and industries that require their service! The design of the machine is uniquely structured to take on specific tasks and specific products. Additionally, there are two basic categories that these types of machines fall into: the automatic and the semi-automatic production filling machine.

 

Every need for a filling machine in any industry is met perfectly by the wide variety of these types of machines in the world today. A few of the most common machines include:

 

Overflow Filler – This machine is most commonly used in the filling of small bottles in a variety of different industries. The simple setup and cleanup of the overflow filling machine make it ideal for industries that require the filling of containers in mass quantities. Designed with foam control technology, these machines are very often used in operations requiring fill-to-glass needs.

 

Net Weigh Filler – Most commonly used in industries whose products are filled by weight, the net weight filling machine is a scale-based machine that can handle virtually any type of weight-based filling task. These machines are generally used to fill totes or pails and can take on jobs that require precise filling of small weights, bulk weights, and everything in between.

 

Time Gravity Filler – This type of machine is best used by companies whose chief products consist of very thin liquids with little to no particulates, and whose physical qualities do not change due to atmospheric changes or changes in temperature. Chemical industries are a perfect example of the use of time gravity-filling machines, as they perfectly handle these types of liquids.

 

These examples are just a few of the dozens of different varieties of filling machines available to industries all over the world. These machines are designed and manufactured to make sure your product is available for purchase as quickly and efficiently as possible.

 

Today’s automatic in-line filling frameworks have developed to accommodate for all intents and purposes of the liquid business necessities. Whether it’s a chemical, cosmetic, or food and beverage application, there exists a fluid packaging system to fit the need.

 

At the point when considering whether to automate, various key components must be examined to settle on an insightful choice. In case you’re in the business of offering a fluid item, there are just two approaches to filling your bundle holders: physically and automatically. In either case, the number of containers that your production line fills is measured in CPM units or Containers Per Minute.

 

Know Your CPM

 

Your existing CPM is a good place to start. This number is fundamental in determining at what point you may want to automate. You should also consider the container your creation line is right now utilizing, its fill size, current everyday generation necessities, and your plant environment. These variables will provide you with a decent idea in case you’re prepared to start the automation process.

 

More Than Just a Filling Unit

 

Consider additionally all the different obligations that current automated packaging systems can perform. These units could be designed to fill your end-user containers, as well as cap and label the containers so that they roll off the production line ready to be shipped.

 

Finally, they’re also variable, meaning that as your company’s output grows, so can the output of your Liquid Packaging Lines. Likewise, if your container capacity changes, so can the machine’s delivery of the product.

 

Pharmaceutical Products Come in Forms Like Powders, Creams or Lotions, Liquids or Syrups, and Tablets. The Filling Machines Used in Pharma Industries Are the Ones That Can Ensure the Filling of These Substances Into Different Kinds of Containers Efficiently and Swiftly. Most of the Time Bottles, Ampoules, and Vials Are Used as Containers for Packaging Valuable Products in Pharmaceutical Processes. Therefore Tablet Filling Machines, Machines for Filling Thicker Syrups and Creams, Bottle Filling Machines, Machines for Filling Vials, and Ampoule Fillers Are Widely Employed in This Industry.

 

Automation in the liquid packaging business is the wave of the future. With its flexibility in accommodating production overruns or shortages, as well as its versatility in adapting to specific production or assembly components, an automated in-line filling system may be exactly what your company needs to obtain – and hold – that competitive advantage.

 

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