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Revitalised packaging and processing equipment show PPMA set to take the industry by storm

by 2015. With packaging and processing equipment likely to constitute a large proportion of the total there is no better time to gather industry professionals together to discover and evaluate the latest news and innovations.

When the PPMA Show heads to Birmingham from 27 – 29 September, the event will bring with it a revitalised new look, thought provoking seminars and a host of the most groundbreaking machines to have hit the industry in the last year. As the biggest industrial gathering to focus exclusively on the food and drink, pharmaceutical, household, cosmetics and pharmaceutical markets in the UK this year, the show will undoubtedly become the epicentre of discussion and debate during the three-day event.

Processing and packaging machinery specialists must constantly be one step ahead of the latest market trends to ensure optimum productivity and efficiency in their workplace. The 2011 show will offer exhibitors the opportunity to network, source the latest technologies and find solutions to their packaging and processing dilemmas. What’s more, the show’s co-location with Interplas 2011 means visitors attending the PPMA Show will also gain entry to the UK’s leading triennial plastics industry gathering.

More than 300 world-class suppliers and service providers, including top names such as Riggs Autopack, Kliklock International, Markem-Imaje, QuickLabel Systems, Sealpack and T Freemantle, are set to showcase their innovations to the high calibre visitors that return each year. With exhibitors ranging from smaller niche businesses from across the UK’s industrial hotspots to well-known international players, visitors will benefit from an array of companies all under one roof, eager to demonstrate their latest concepts and develop new partnerships.

Other exhibitors include specialist manufacturer of metal detectable products Detectamet (stand C6), who will be showcasing its new "2 for 1" food safe X-Ray visible plastic for food and drink. The Detectamet Super XD Plastic is a unique product which reduces the risk of product contamination and is available in a range of plastics included nylon and polypropylene.

Flexco’s (stand 96) display will include two of its recent product launches, the Novitool® Aero™ Press and the Novitool® Pun M™ mobile finger punch. The company’s belt conveyer experts will be on hand to show visitors the very latest enhancements to the Aero™ Press that include the quick valve release and increased bottom platen temperature control which make the tool more user friendly.

Yamato Scale Dataweigh (stand B21) will be showcasing its new innovative multihead weigher, Dataweigh Omega, at this year’s show. Aimed predominantly at the food, confectionery snack, powder and detergent sectors, Dataweigh Omega offers improved productivity by operating with greater speed and precision. The system benefits from new high frequency technology which minimises load cell vibrations as well as a new digital filter for maximum speed. In addition, dual load cells eliminate low-frequency vibrations whilst a toggle-less gating mechanism reduces the mechanical impact on the load cell and suppresses the bucket gating noise. Individually adjustable collating chutes also facilitate high-speed discharge, ensuring flexibility and enhanced product diversity whilst the accuracy of the system means there is little product waste.

Barcode label and mobile computer suppliers Codeway Limited (stand A27) will be on hand to show visitors its latest labelling and auto-id technologies including Nice Label Windows software and Avery Dennison print engines and applicators. The company’s experts will also be able to give specialist advice on automatic identification and data capture technologies, including RFID. Codeway Limited’s labels carry text, graphics and GS1 DataBar as well as linear bar codes where production dates and serial numbers are required.

As an exclusive for the PPMA Show, Endoline Machinery (stand D30) is set to launch its complete packaging assembly lines with robotic pick and place systems as part of a partnership with ABB Limited – one of the world’s leading engineering companies. The robot will form an integral part of the new packaging module and will be built into an Endoline conveyor system that will feed from a high-speed case erector into a case sealer. It will be showcased using an ABB IRB1600 robot which is engineered to deliver maximum output from a smaller footprint. Endoline has witnessed a 30% increase in exports over a 12 month period, which further highlights the rise in the demand for robots within the UK industrial sector.

Tecnal Industries (stand E61), French specialists in custom-engineered machinery, will be bringing its latest robot that is ideal for the dairy industry. Developed to improve production hygiene, the concept uses a new type of thin blade to avoid tearing curd and eliminates the need for a brining unit, saving production facilities space and maintenance costs.

Helping food processors to overcome their production line challenges, Euroflow Engineering (stand A2) have an experienced design team who focus on creating innovative automation and processing concepts. At this year’s show the company will be displaying a range of its stainless steel processing and handling equipment for denesting, filling, sealing and coding, which include PU belt conveyers, pneumatic rotary tables and horizontal transfer pumps.

Other exhibitors will include Allen Coding Systems, Brunel Engineering Services, Loma Systems, Sealpac Ltd and Watson-Marlow.

For the very first time at the PPMA Show, the Manufacturing Forum will see the exhibition floor turn into a bustling arena of debate as a number of challenges are addressed, including machinery safety, automation, industry regulations and waste reduction, designing equipment for brand growth, equipment breakdowns and project cycle times. Delegates looking to improve productivity and maximise energy efficiency will be given the chance to hear directly from a number of the industry’s leading experts including The Packaging Society, C-Cubed Limited, the Manufacturing Advisory Service and Laidler Associates.

Marks and Spencer PLC will give manufacturers a unique insight from a global retailer’s perspective as Technologist John Quinn looks at the challenges of robotics in the chilled food sector.

Following the Government’s £600,000 funding to help encourage UK manufacturers’ adoption of automation, Automation Advisory Services will be giving a topical seminar on how it can increase competitiveness and be implemented into business successfully. Using recent case studies, delegates can witness the benefits of the process, including reduced energy consumption and labour turnover.

Helping visitors to speed up their efficiency in running numerous equipment software programmes, the Organisation for Machine Automation and Control (OMAC) will be sharing insights into the benefits of creating a common machine language for automated machines. John Kowal from OMAC’s Board of Directors will draw on experience with Nestle and Proctor & Gamble and show machinery users how best to reduce engineering and training costs and shorten the length of project cycles as well as improve their supply chain integration.

As robotics increasingly become the go-to solutions for manufacturing and processing businesses, a debate on their competitive advantages will be presented by experienced end users and integrators such as Mike Wilson from The British Automation and Robot Association, Mark Williamson from UK Industrial Vision Association and John Morten from Burton’s Foods Ltd. The panel will discuss the industry’s latest developments, challenges and recent successes in automation and vision technologies, which include a sufficient energy saving for users.

B & R Industrial Automation, who are also sponsoring the feature this year, will look at how greater energy efficiency can be achieved through innovative motion control technology. Assessing a range of motion control hardware and software visitors can find out how the company’s techniques, including motor size optimisation and power regeneration, benefit packaging and processing equipment throughout the manufacturing production line.

Drawing on case studies and industry successes, the free-to-attend seminars will provide machinery experts and end-users such as factory managers, equipment specifiers and project engineers with practical advice to help overcome everyday manufacturing obstacles. It’s a ‘must-attend’ for anyone who wants to maximise their business prospects and enhance their competitive edge.

Also as part of the event’s revitalised outlook, the PPMA Show will be launching a new feature this year that aims to celebrate young industry professionals and highlight some of the great work they do within the expanding processing and packaging machinery market. The Ones to Watch is open to individuals from across the UK who are aged under 35 and have worked in the industry for more than four years. The talented professionals will be honoured at an exclusive drinks reception and awards ceremony on the first evening of the event.

Organisers are also keen to bring together manufacturers and service providers ahead of the PPMA Show and have just launched a new social media campaign being launched this year. The aim of the show’s LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter pages are to share ideas, get the latest PPMA Show news and network in the run up to the show, as well as facilitate continuous communication between both visitors and exhibitors.

With last year’s event welcoming top industry names from Asda, GlaxoSmithKline, Nestlé and PepsiCo walking through the doors, the 2011 event is expected to present businesses with an invaluable opportunity to source new strategic partnerships and witness the very latest machinery and services.

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