Cartons are one of the most versatile packaging solutions available. In the food industry, it’s the go-to way to package everything from meal kits to frozen foods to confectionery. Small wonder that this impressive cartoning machine has become a staple of food processing facilities the world over.
These machines are crucial equipment in the food industry, used to package a wide range of products efficiently and effectively.
In this article, we’ll explore some of the great uses of these machines in the food industry and how they can help streamline production and improve product quality.
What is a Cartoner Machine?
In a nutshell, this machine for cartoning (a.k.a a carton form, fill, seal machine) refers to a specific type of packaging machine used to raise, close, and pack sealed cartons. Flat cartons, known as blanks, are fed into the machine, which turns them into a box.
Capable of handling high volumes of packaging, the automatic cartoning machine allows food processing facilities to ramp up production when necessary – and the result is contained in secondary or tertiary packaging.
The result is neat, easy-to-stack packaging perfect for warehouses and supermarket shelves. In addition, It helps improve food safety by providing reliable and consistent packaging that reduces the risk of contamination, ensures accurate portion control, creates tight seals, and provides better labeling and traceability.
Types of Cartoning Equipment
Food manufacturers use two main types of machines for cartoning, depending on the carton’s orientation – horizontal and vertical.
1. Horizontal Cartoning Machine
It involves the horizontal insertion of the product into the carton. This horizontal cartoner machine is used for larger products, such as pizzas, cakes, rice, and cereals (as well as flow-wrapped products), with the option for continuous or intermittent packaging.
In addition, they’re also commonly used for multipack packaging, where multiple items are packaged together into a single carton.
2. Vertical Cartoning Machine
It packages products vertically into cartons. These machines package more granular products like pouches, rice, or dry pasta. The product is funneled into the carton from the top and inserted manually or automatically.
When choosing a machine, it is crucial to consider the product size, packaging type, and desired throughput to ensure the machine fits your packaging needs.
10 Uses of a Food Cartoning Machine
Food cartoning equipment has numerous advantages over alternatives – increased efficiency, cost-effectiveness, variety of carton types, and more. However, perhaps the most favored reason is the large range of food products you can store in a carton.
Let’s explore the 10 uses of cartoning machinery in the food industry:
1. Pouches, Sachets, and Stick Packs
Containing sugar, sweetener, coffee, and other granular products, stick packs, as well as pouches and sachets (think condiments and shampoos), are readily packaged efficiently and quickly into cartons using a vertical cartoning machine. Doing so prevents these small, lightweight products from becoming damaged or protecting against moisture.
2. Meal Kits
Meal kits have become increasingly popular in recent years, with many companies offering pre-portioned ingredients and recipes delivered to consumers’ doorsteps. While the individual ingredients may be flow-wrapped or bagged, the kit comes in an easy-to-grab carton perfect for stacking supermarket shelves.
3. Frozen Foods
Pizzas, ready meals, frozen chicken, and other pre-made food items require durable packaging to protect them during transportation and storage. Cartoning machine manufacturers recognize the importance of protecting frozen foods during packaging and transportation.
To ensure that frozen food products are properly handled and protected, these manufacturers offer a range of specialized cartoning machines.
4. Baked Goods
Bread, cakes, and pastries require baked good packaging to keep them fresh and protected from the factory floor to home cupboards. Machines package these products into easily stackable, boxable cartons that guarantee no damage or spoilage throughout transportation.
5. Flow-Wrapped Products
Flow-wrapped products, such as candy bars and granola bars, require packaging to ensure they stay together. Consumers don’t want to buy a single granola or candy bar.
The cartoning box packing machine places the products into pre-formed cartons. The cartons are folded and sealed, ensuring the products are securely packaged and protected during transportation and display.
Confectionary products, such as chocolates and sweets, require attractive, eye-catching packaging to appeal to consumers. Paper boxes, in particular, can be printed with high-quality graphics and branding that stand out on store shelves.
7. Infant Formula
Powdered products like infant formula are inconvenient when bagged. The bag slumps, and the formula gets everywhere. Carton is sturdy and protective, allowing it to be packaged quickly.
An automatic cartoning machine is designed to achieve high accuracy and consistency in packaging products, ensuring that each package meets the required specifications.
8. Pasta and Rice
Loose, dry items like pasta and rice are often bagged. Doing so often leads to breakages, however. Higher-end pasta, rice, and grain products usually come in a sturdy carton to protect them from moisture, other environmental factors, and breakage. That’s especially important during the transportation process.
Cereals almost always involve a flow-wrapped internal bag within a large cardboard carton. This dual-layer system keeps the cereal fresh and protected from moisture (locking in the crisp taste) while preventing the delicate cereal from being crushed into a fine powder inside the bag.
This machine offers flexibility in packaging design, allowing cartoning machine manufacturers to customize packaging to meet consumer preferences and market demands. It ensures that cereal products are attractively packaged and stand out on store shelves, increasing sales.
Coffee comes in so many different forms. While fresh coffee and beans are often bagged to ensure freshness, individual sachets or the foil bags of beans or ground can be contained within a larger carton. That is especially true of instant coffee products stored and stacked on supermarket shelves.
Learn Why Your Business Needs an Automatic Cartoning Machine
Investing in an automatic cartoner provides numerous benefits to your business, including:
Automatic machines package products more quickly and efficiently than manual labor, improving overall productivity.
Reduced labor costs
By automating the process, businesses reduce the need for manual labor – a major cost to businesses.
These are designed with stringent safety features to protect workers from accidents and injuries.
Want to learn more? We’re not surprised – cartoning machinery allows businesses to drop costs and raise standards. Notably, cartoning is the industry standard for numerous food products.
At Plan IT Packaging, we provide innovative solutions that can help you increase efficiency, reduce waste, and save costs.
Contact Us now to explore the benefits of a cartoning machine for your business.