From virtual reality to pre-prepared foods
Nov 9, 2017
Source: Flexible Packaging magazine
I had the opportunity to attend Pack Expo 2017 in Las Vegas this fall with a team from Stellar. We met leaders from various segments of the F&B industry and enjoyed showing off our virtual design construction (VDC) technology.
These shows are always a great opportunity to network with food industry leaders and to see the very latest technologies and trends. This year was no exception. These were my big takeaways:
Sep 28, 2017
Consumer demand for “clean labels” with simple and natural ingredients has been a driving force in the food industry in recent years. In fact, clean-label foods is forecasted to be a $180 billion global market by 2020, and many food manufacturers are reformulating recipes to adapt with the growing trend.
The idea behind clean eating is avoiding foods with preservatives, artificial additives and “ingredients you can’t pronounce.” Although most of these additives are USDA-approved and technically safe to consume, they have undoubtedly developed a stigma among consumers.
Sep 21, 2017
Photo: Food Engineering’s “How to determine the best sensor for filling applications”
Filling and weighing systems are a fundamental part of the food and beverage industry. On the line, they establish fill weights, volumes and levels for products whether it’s flavorings, beverages, slurry products or bulk containers of dry and/or liquid ingredients.
When it comes to recipes, the slightest change in ingredients can spoil an entire batch of product — that’s why precise weighing is paramount.
Aug 3, 2017
I see a lot of neat things working in the food and beverage industry, especially because I have the opportunity to work with a wide variety of clients across different sectors.
Of course, food manufacturers know their product best, because ultimately, it’s their product. However, when it comes to their processing and the technology they use to make their product, I often encourage owners to keep an open mind.
Here’s the thing: Many times, companies can get boxed in and only focus on their particular product and the way things are “typically” done in their industry. Their factories and boardrooms can act as echo chambers for their ideas.
Jun 15, 2017
Steam is used in food processing for a variety of reasons from preparing product to cleaning equipment. Common uses of steam in food and beverage facilities include:
- Blanching product
- Rehydrating product
- Sterilizing equipment
- Steam-in-Place (SIP) to clean pipes
But not all steam is created equal.
May 25, 2017
Developing a manufacturing plan is generally the second phase in the strategic planning process. After creating a business plan and specifying your food processing plant’s sales and growth projections, a manufacturing plan will identify and assess the processes that are used to manufacture the product to meet those sales goals.
Mar 23, 2017
Coffee continues to be one of the most rapidly evolving markets in the food and beverage industry. Variety in flavor options and the growing popularity of cold brew coffee are just a few of the latest market trends.
Consumer preferences and tastes are constantly changing, and to meet market demand while remaining profitable, producers need greater control over their processing and packaging systems.
Mar 16, 2017
Bottling is one of the biggest challenges in spirit manufacturing. In fact, it’s the most common issue our team encounters when working with clients in this space.
For spirit manufacturers, it’s not usually a question of “Can we make this product?” but rather “Can we get it into a bottle fast enough to fulfill all our orders?”
How you get your product into its bottle can easily bottleneck your entire operation. Are you experiencing inefficiencies at your plant? Wondering why your output isn’t what you estimated? Your problems may stem from issues with equipment, bottle types and/or overall processing lines.
Feb 16, 2017
There’s a lot happening in the food and beverage packaging industry, and if there’s one place to get a pulse on it all, it’s PACK EXPO International. I had the privilege of attending the 60th anniversary of this premier industry trade show last November in Chicago. The event is huge and features hundreds of vendors — with 10×10 booths all the way up to exhibitors that take up nearly a quarter of the largest convention center in North America.
Feb 9, 2017
What’s the first thing you think about when walking into your office each morning? The reality is that you’re likely juggling several things at once, right out the gate.
Manufacturing and processing in the food and beverage space has a lot of moving parts (literally and figuratively), and food processors often have a lot on their plates — food safety priorities, personnel issues and distribution logistics are just a few.
But have you considered how your plant’s operations intersect with your company’s branding?