Turning tough times into opportunities

From design, automation and control, packaging machinery to materials and containers, the Total Show 2013 offers the opportunity to discover the latest technologies to enhance business and transform your production line. Crucial at a time when industry is facing multiple challenges

This year's Total Processing & Packaging exhibition takes place against a tough backdrop for the industry. Manufacturing output fell by 3% in the year to March 2013, according to the Office for National Statistics. On top of that, the manufacturing industry is suffering a degree of collateral damage from the horsemeat scandal. The industry could be forgiven for looking glum.

Luckily, there are some chinks of light amongst the darkness, and some firms are finding ways to turn the crises into opportunities.

Michelle Newman, marketing manager for Kliklok, Stand No. H10, said, “In light of the recent controversy over horsemeat, an increasing number of supermarkets are pledging to source their ingredients from reputable suppliers in the  UK. It already seems that the average consumer is now favouring fish and chicken over red meat consumption. For the UK food producer, this may well lead to an unexpected upturn in overall production, which means that higher speed, labour-saving automatic packaging could be the next step.”

Graham Earl, exhibition manager at the Total Processing & Packaging Exhibition, added: "It sounds counter-intuitive, but tough times can be positive for manufacturers, as they act as a catalyst for innovation. We think that this is where a show like Total comes into its own - it is a place to meet peers from across the industry, share the latest ideas and thinking, and find ways to chart a course through the tough terrain."

Over 320 exhibitors will be on hand to demonstrate just how processing and packaging professionals can improve efficiency, accuracy and consistency while focusing on innovation. The exhibition comprises three dedicated hubs including Pakex, PPMA and Interphex.

While advice on the latest pressing industry topics can be found on a number of exhibitor stands, free-to-attend seminars will be available throughout the 3-day event. Reflecting the three show hubs, visitors can attend seminars in the Manufacturing Forum, the Interphex Theatre, and Pakex Innovation Hub. Each hub offers a different seminar programme chaired by editors from industry magazines, Society and Institution representatives and industry experts from organisations such as Tyrells, M&S, Dairy Crest, Kerry Foods, GSK?and Siemens.

While attendees can discover the latest in packaging design at the Pakex Innovation Hub, and an insight into the issues and pressing topics affecting pharmaceutical manufacturers in the Interphex Theatre, those looking for developments in machinery and automation, can join the Manufacturing forum. This hub will offer an insight into the technology designed to help manufacturers reduce waste, increase flexibility and transform productivity on the production line.    

Looking to the future

Recognising the best and brightest up-and-coming talent in the industry will also be a key focus of the show, with the return of the Ones to Watch competition and the launch of the new Packaging Design Challenge.

Ones to Watch is a search for the industry's brightest young processing and packaging professional, judged on entrepreneurial spirit and a commitment to the industry. Sponsored by Festo, a public vote will decide the successful candidate and 'one to watch', who will win more than £9,500 of in-house training from Festo's Training & Consulting portfolio.

New to this year’s  exhibition is the Packaging Design Challenge, which will offer one lucky packaging professional the chance at an investment in their packaging innovations. Candidates are invited to submit their packaging concepts for a chance to secure a real financial investment live at the show. If you have a concept or packaging idea you'd like to see on the shop shelves, visit www.total            exhibition.com/packdesignchallenge for more information.

And let’s not forget there is also the exhibition itself, with over 300 exhibitors showing their wares!

For example, Vacuum pump and over pressure blower manufacturer Busch will highlight its R 5 rotary vane vacuum pump, as well as after sales and service products at the show. The R 5 range is designed for continuous use in many different applications and is divided into three basic categories - the R5 Standard, the R5 Compact and the R5 Special, which suit different environments and industrial processes. Visit Stand No. J25.

Ishida’s latest multihead weigher will make its UK debut at the exhibition on Stand No. A30. Also, making its first appearance will be a new semi-automatic tray sealer, alongside developments in X-ray and checkweigher technology, and a snack food packing system.  The new semi-automatic QX-300 FLEX traysealer is suitable for growing businesses or new product development work.

Conveying and bulk bag handling equipment company Spiroflow will have three operational exhibits on its stand (No. A71): the newly designed Bulk Bag Discharger with integral flexible screw conveyor; the ‘C3’ Bulk Bag Filler with automatic height adjustment, vibration and weigh platform and automated Roller Conveyor, and the contained Flexible Screw Conveyor.

Launched at the last Total show, the Universal Robot, a lightweight and economical robotic arm that provides easy automation, will be on display on the R. A. Rodriguez stand. This time, the company will show how complementary technology can now add intelligence and a greater scope of application. Visit Stand No. D60

According to Pacepacker Services, preconditioned solutions, which are suitable for seasonal packers or low volume product producers, are typically half the cost of a new system. The company will show its Blu-Robot Pick & Place range of second user automation solutions on Stand No. J22.

Two inspection equipment companies, Loma Systems and Lock Inspection, will demonstrate their recent collaboration in metal detection, checkweighing and X-ray inspection systems for the food and pharma industries. The joint stand at Total (No. FG60) will display eight working systems, including the launch of Loma’s X4 x-ray and the UK show debut of Lock’s latest PH?Pharmaceutical detection system.      

The increasing importance of industrial vision in processing and packaging applications is reflected in the considerable commitment of the UKIVA (UK Industrial Vision Association) membership to exhibit at the 2013 Total show. Nearly 40% of the UKIVA membership has booked stands at the show. Members exhibiting include Sick, Stemmer Imaging, Olmec and Cognex.

SICK will launch its RapCo system, designed to improve the speed and efficiency of product changeovers on multi-product lines.  The RapCo system works by adjusting mechanical stops automatically through an integrated package of sensors, drives, a controller, display and cabling. The system is simple to operate via a display. See the system on stand No. D12.

On Stand No. D70, Stemmer Imaging will show a new, scalable multi-camera vision system, the GEVA300 from Teledyne DALSA, which provides a low cost process inspection capability. Vision systems integrator, Olmec, will be showing the Quality Station (QS) turnkey, self-contained in-line vision inspection system. Typical applications for the QS include checking for product assembly completeness, colour or defect analysis, as well as label inspection. (Stand No. H67).

Machine vision company Cognex will exhibit a range of products, including the new DS1000 3D laser profiling system. The system calibrates real-world units of measurement for inspections too difficult to perform with traditional two-dimensional machine vision. Other products on show include  the DataMan 50L series of compact barcode readers designed for 1-D oriented barcode reading, the expanded DataMan 503 line of image-based barcode readers for logistics, postal, and retail distribution applications, and the In-Sight 7010C, an entry-level colour vision system that can distinguish parts by colour. The system features 24-bit colour resolution that accurately identifies 16 million colour variations – more than the human eye can detect.

Total Exhibition

www.totalexhibition.co.uk

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