Moisttech debuts new equipment ideal for chocolate, condiments, cheese & more!

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Requiring an instant method of moisture detection during the manufacturing process is very common in the food industry, but what about when it comes to applications such as condiments, chocolate, soft cheese, sauces and more? MoistTech is debuting their Food Grade Sanitary Valve Connection that allows for the instant measurement of moisture through a pipeline for pneumatically conveyed materials. This provides users with a non-destructive way to have instant moisture measurements directly on the production line without time consuming traditional laboratory methods. The Food Grade Sanitary Valve Connection is designed to be adapted to the process pipeline conveyed material, allowing the material to flow directly against the NIR detector without wasting or contaminating the product.   Monitor: Process optimization and monitoring creates increased efficiency & less waste Adjust: Operational personnel are able to make crucial, immediate adjustments Improve: Maintain product integrity, quality control & prevent waste & downtime   CONTINUOUS IMPROVEMENTS FOR FOOD MANUFACTURING   www.moistech.com info@moisttech.com 941-727-1800 USA +44 1138680413 EU

Iceland Seafood decides to exit UK market

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Iceland Seafood has decided to exit the UK market, saying that the operation is no longer a strategic fit. Iceland Seafood UK previously invested in operating facilities in Grimsby and merged it’s operations from Bradford and Grimsby into this location. The investment and decision of the merger was completed in March 2020, just before the pandemic began, and the renovation and installation of the factory was very much affected by COVID-19 and later Brexit along with difficulties in overall operations. Iceland Seafood has now decided that it plans to exit this market from a value-added perspective and has mandated MAR advisors to support the process. Iceland Seafood said: “Although it has been concluded that the UK operation is not a strategic fit for Iceland Seafood anymore, the excellent facilities and strong management team in Grimsby can be a great addition to other companies in the sector.”

University partners with cheesemakers to optimise production using machine-learning and AI

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Aston University and fourth-generation family cheesemakers, Butlers Farmhouse Cheeses (BFC) based in rural Lancashire, have teamed up through a Knowldge Transfer Partnership (KTP) to use high-tech solutions to increase their cheese production. The project will develop novel business analytics and machine learning capability in order to amplify cheese production, looking at milk yields, animal feed and supply chain processes. It will collect data sets throughout the supply chain, from feeding livestock through to the cheese-making process and product consistency. Cutting-edge technologies that are unique in the sector such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) will be applied, to predict and optimise the quality and quantity of milk, helping BFC to forecast future cheese demand. A KTP is a three-way collaboration between a business, an academic partner and a highly qualified researcher, known as a KTP associate. The academic team from Aston University will be led by Dr Jiabin Luo, lecturer in business analytics, whose interests focus on optimisation modelling and decision-making in logistics process and supply chains in a wide range of businesses. She will be joined by Dr Ozren Despic, whose main research focus is on developing mathematical models for their use in efficiency measurement and decision making. Academic support will also be provided by Dr Viktor Pekar and Dr Eliseo Vilalta-Perdomo. Dr Pekar’s interests focus on predictive modelling, machine learning and natural language processing. Dr Vilalta-Perdomo’s research is at the intersection of issues such as human performance, technology and sustainable operations. Completing the team in the KTP associate position is Giwa Reagan Iziomo, who has proven expertise in data science and business analytics. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and a master’s in business analytics and brings onboard years of industry experience in process improvement, supply chain and commercial analyses. Daniel Hall, fourth-generation owner and operations director of Butlers Farmhouse Cheeses, said: “The British cheese renaissance we’re seeing at the moment is really exciting – more people than ever are buying into local, quality farmhouse cheesemaking and the variety of superb cheeses we have in this country. “Our collaboration is an important lever in keeping this momentum going – with access to Aston University’s expertise in artificial intelligence, machine learning and data analytics, we can push the boundaries of our supply chain and processes both now and for the future.” Dr Jiabin Luo, lecturer in business analytics at Aston Business School, says: “The project presents an opportunity to deploy the concepts and theories resulting from our research in a real-world situation and demonstrate its high-quality impact. “It also has a positive impact on teaching through case studies on the novel aspect of BFC’s substantial control of its own supply chain.”

Pernod Ricard USA invests $22m in its first ready-to-drink canning line

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Pernod Ricard USA has invested in its first-ever ready-to-drink (RTD) canning line, which will be located at the company’s Fort Smith plant in Arkansas. The $22 million investment will provide the facility with canning capabilities, help accelerate growth for the company, add more US jobs and create a spillover of economic benefits for the local community.

 “This investment is an incredible step in strengthening our manufacturing footprint in Fort Smith,” said Pierre Joncourt, senior vice president, Pernod Ricard North America. “The high-speed canning line will be instrumental in increasing our production capabilities and swiftly bringing our premium, bar-quality RTDs to market.”

The plant already produces several Pernod Ricard spirits, including Kahlua Coffee Liqueur and Seagram’s Gin. This new canning line — and the RTD offerings they’ll be able to produce as a result — will give them an opportunity to help make popular brands, like Jameson, Absolut, Malibu and TX Whiskey, even more accessible for consumers.

RTDs — which now include hard seltzers, prepared cocktails and long drinks, hard teas and coffees, wine spritzers and coolers — are ultra-convenient, easy to find, easy to carry, easy to store and easy to recycle. They’re also projected to be the fastest growing alcohol category globally over the next five years, with an expectation for them to increase by an additional $11.6 billion during that time (according to a new report from IWSR).

 “Volume has only continued to increase for our Fort Smith facility and the spirits industry overall,” said Jennifer Anglin, senior operations director for the Fort Smith plant. “This latest canning line expansion will not only allow us to produce various spirits across our brand portfolio, but more importantly, it will create numerous jobs to keep up with demand.”

With so much projected growth, the Fort Smith plant has also recently welcomed the addition of eight brand new 50,000-gallon tanks to assist with production.

i2r plants tree in support of Queen’s Green Canopy initiative

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In support of the Queen’s Green Canopy (QGC) initiative and in memoriam to honour Her Majesty, market leading aluminium foil tray manufacturer, i2r Packaging Solutions, has recently planted a tree in the grounds of their corporate headquarters in Telford – Shropshire. As a nationwide initiative created to mark the Platinum Jubilee, the QGC was due to conclude in December – the end of the Jubilee year. However, as the official tree planting season in the UK runs from October to March, the initiative has been extended to include the full tree planting season, beginning in October 2022 and concluding in March 2023. The aim of the QGC was to create a living legacy with over a million trees planted in Her Majesty’s name across the nation during the first planting season, October 2021 to March 2022. The extension of the QGC initiative will build on this legacy and serve as a lasting tribute to Her Majesty’s extraordinary service to her country and her people. The event, which was watched by many of the firm’s employees, was conducted by i2r’s managing director, James Knight, who said: “As a lasting legacy in honour of the Queen, it’s entirely fitting that i2r should add their contribution to the Queen’s Green Canopy initiative, particularly having won two Queen’s Awards for Enterprise in recent years. Our tribute also serves to recognise the Queen’s unstinting support to British business and her remarkable leadership throughout her reign.” The company is Europe’s largest aluminium tray producer. Manufacturing over 1.4 billion products annually, i2r supplies many major food producers and retail brands, as well as to wholesaler and distributor markets worldwide, including Central & Northern Europe, Asia, North & South America and Australia. i2r will add their tree to the QGC interactive map. For more information on i2r visit i2rps.com/.

Come visit SCOTT at ALL4PACK Paris to discuss your next palletising project

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The leading international packaging and materials handling trade show ALL4PACK will take place in Paris next week, from 21 – 24 November. Visit SCOTT on stand H143 in Hall 5 and let their expert team share their advice based on decades of experience. SCOTT have a number of recently completed projects to showcase, which you can benefit from when planning your next materials handling investments. These solutions include:
  • Robotic and layer palletising systems
  • Pallet conveying systems
  • Automated Storage & Retrieval Systems
  • Turnkey solutions
  • All supported by SCOTT’s local maintenance services with 24/7 cover
Have a new automation project? SCOTT are keen to support you. Come and have a chat about it with the team at the Show. SCOTT are looking forward to meeting you in Paris! For more information you can contact: Read more on the SCOTT website: https://scottautomation.com/en-gb/news-and-events/all4pack-2022

Global Brands to expand distribution centre in £2m development

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Global Brands, the independent drinks company and distributor, are increasing their distribution capabilities with significant expansion to their warehouse facilities in Clay Cross, Derbyshire. The current Global Brands Distribution Centre has 152,000 sq ft of warehouse space, employing 80 members of staff. This expansion will increase the warehouse size to 180,800 sq ft, and add 30 members of staff to the production and distribution line at the facilities. The expansion will increase total storage capabilities at the warehouse from 30 million to 40 million bottles, across 17,000 pallets. Following extensive groundworks, the steel frame is being erected over the next two months, and a concrete slab base will then be poured and set. Works for the 28,800 sq ft extension will conclude in January 2023. The expansion follows a sustained increase in demand versus 2019 (the last year of undisrupted trading) for the company’s portfolio of drinks brands, including VK, Hooch, Franklin & Sons, All Shook Up, Shake Baby Shake, Beviamo, Kick Energy, Lustre, and Amigos Tequila Beer. Steve Perez, founder and chairman at Global Brands, said: “I’m thrilled to announce the expansion of our distribution facilities in Clay Cross, following a sustained increase in demand nationally and huge demand internationally for our key growth brands like Franklin & Sons. The new extension will support our growing operations with additional storage and increased distribution capabilities. “This is just the first phase in work to continue increasing capabilities at the site over the next two years. We plan to continue investing in our Global Brands Distribution Centre to the point where we can eventually hold one product for every person in the UK.” Alongside the current construction, Global Brands has recently purchased an adjacent piece of land for further investment into the area and facilities. The acquisition was brokered by BRM Solicitors. Adrian Sheehan executive director at BRM Solicitors, said: “It is always rewarding to advise on a deal which will bring further development opportunities and employment to the region. “BRM are proud to stand to shoulder to shoulder with this long-standing client and Chesterfield success story. “It is great to see Global Brands go from strength to strength and highlights a commitment to Chesterfield. “The Real Estate team at BRM are delighted to advise Steve and the team at Global, who are always driven and enthusiastic to get deals done quickly and efficiently.” Steve Perez adds: “BRM have advised Global Brands for the past 35 years, from when the business was just a one-man band, through to becoming one of the largest employers in the area. This is a credit to the expertise that BRM and Adrian Sheehan offer and cater to a variety of business needs.”

Loma Systems launches new X5 SideShoot for taller products

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Loma Systems, a global leader in inspection technologies for food quality and safety, has unveiled its latest addition to the X5 X-ray inspection series – the X5 SideShoot, designed and engineered specifically for the inspection of taller products. In further defining their X-ray offering, X5 SideShoot complements their existing portfolio that can inspect diverse applications from dairy and egg products, dried foods, cereals and grains to confectionery and snack foods or fruit, vegetables and nuts. By using dynamic detection, the X5 SideShoot carries out a series of product inspections looking for unwanted contaminants; it can even estimate fill level, check for missing content and determine whether a package is damaged. Loma Systems are constantly developing technology, including specific software algorithms and engineering solutions to address the challenges of tall profile packages. The X5 SideShoot system can inspect product packaging up to 265mm in height, including plastic bottles, glass jars with metal lids, aluminium cans, plastic tubs and pots, tetra pack cartons, cardboard cans and tubes. Delivering production efficiencies with an impressive line speed of up to 50m/min the X5 SideShoot can check product integrity for safety, quality and safeguards against a broad range of contaminants. Which include ferrous, non-ferrous and stainless steel (~1.5-2.0mm St/St) metal, provide reliable detection of glass, bone, ceramic/stone, dense plastics and product clumps. For operators, the system is easy to set up and use, with Loma Learn function ensuring the system can change dynamically as the customer switches products. It also comes complete with a 15″ colour touchscreen, multilevel password access storing data logged events for traceability, better digital detection to reduce electrical interference for image optimisation and much more. Furthermore, being IP66-rated for low-pressure washdown, X5 SideShoot complies with international standards enabling retailers to meet the strictest codes of practice. The X5 SideShoot also offers energy-saving capabilities utilising a unique beam shutter design with automatic idle. This feature reduces the amount of energy used when no product is passing, delivering much-needed energy efficiencies, and extending the lifetime of components. “As the food and packaging market evolves, there is an increasing demand to offer more innovative solutions to our customer’s challenges,” said Toby Kemp, LOMA’s Director of Marketing & Innovation. “The New X5 SideShoot has been specifically designed and engineered to help our customers deliver new packaging technologies, successfully inspect products that are taller versus width, promote sustainability and enhance food safety.” To find out more about LOMA’s new X5 SideShoot, visit here.

Encirc to purchase bottling and warehousing facility from Accolade Wines

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Encirc, a Vidrala Company, has entered into a deal with Accolade Wines to purchase the assets of “The Park” bottling and warehousing facility in Bristol, UK. The agreement will see Accolade Wines entering a 10-year contract bottling and distribution agreement with Encirc to ensure ongoing support for its flagship beverage brands. The move will utilise rail distribution between sites and supply into retail, enabling Encirc to provide an ultra-efficient, sustainable supply chain service across the UK beverage market. The Park is a highly advanced, sustainable and award-winning manufacturing facility, capable of producing the equivalent of more than 30 million, 9-litre cases of wine a year. Following investments by Accolade Wines, the facility is currently zero waste and carbon neutral, with the installation of wind turbines in 2019 contributing to the use of 100% renewable electricity. Encirc operates from its three purpose-built sites in Derrylin, Co Fermanagh, Elton, Cheshire and Corsico, Italy. It produces around 4 billion glass bottles and other containers annually and can fill more than 200 million litres of bulk shipped beverages every year. Accolade Wines Chief Executive Officer, Robert Foye, said the decision to divest The Park facility and enter a long-term bottling and distribution agreement with Encirc would deliver the optimal supply chain structure to support the company’s growth strategy in key markets, including the UK and Europe. “Accolade Wines is committed to excellence across its global supply chain in terms of innovation, quality, efficiency and sustainability,” Mr. Foye said. “The Park represents best practice across all of these criteria and, through our collaboration with Encirc with its deep experience and networks across Europe, we will be able to continue accessing all the benefits of this world-class facility while extracting additional efficiency and flexibility in our supply chain. In Encirc, we have found the perfect partner to provide the bottling, warehousing and distribution services we need to support our premiumisation strategy in the growth markets of Europe and around the world.” Encirc Managing Director, Adrian Curry, said: “This deal shows how collaboration and innovation between organisations who put sustainability and planet-first operations first can lead to the realisation of a shared vision. This deal will allow us to service the UK glass beverage market with an offering that is unrivalled globally in terms of service and sustainability. We are excited to welcome our new colleagues from The Park into the Encirc family.” Under the terms of the agreement, Encirc will acquire The Park facility and all associated plant and equipment. As part of the transaction, approximately 400 employees engaged in manufacturing at The Park will transfer to Encirc on their existing terms of employment. The Accolade Wines team members not involved in manufacturing will continue to drive Accolade Wine’s European business, and work with Encirc to ensure a smooth transition to the new model with no disruption to customers. The transaction is scheduled to close in January 2023.

New ‘123 Pledge’ set to mobilize global action on food loss and waste as key climate strategy

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Timed with COP27, the new ‘123 Pledge’ kicked off to accelerate action to reduce food loss and waste worldwide. The Pledge challenges governments, businesses, chefs and other important actors in the food system to commit to concrete steps that will make reducing food loss and waste a part of their action agendas on greenhouse gas emissions. The way food is produced and consumed today results in high rates of food loss and waste. An estimated 14% of food is lost in the food supply chain from post-harvest up to wholesale included. Meanwhile, 17% of food is wasted at retail and consumer level. This food loss and waste costs the global economy over USD $1 trillion annually. It’s also responsible for more than four times the greenhouse gas emissions of all annual aviation combined. “Food loss and waste drives up to 10% of planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions, yet just a handful of countries mention it in their national climate plans. None of the world’s biggest emitters are on that list,” said Liz Goodwin, senior fellow and director of food loss and waste at World Resources Institute, which serves as secretariat of Champions 12.3. “Despite some real bright spots, the world is woefully behind where it needs to be. Without real action to halve food loss and waste, it will be very difficult to solve the climate crisis.” “With the damaging effects climate change has on food security and nutrition, and the negative effects of agrifood systems on climate change and the environment across the world, now is the moment for decisive action to transform how our agrifood systems operate and reduce food loss and waste, providing benefits from both a mitigation and adaptation angle to assure better production, better nutrition, better environment and better life,” said Máximo Torero Cullen, chief economist of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. “Commitment from all stakeholders – from governments, private sector companies, small producers and civil society to consumers – will be required if we are to make a dent on the issue of FLW and achieve the aspirations of the 2030 Agenda. This is the importance of the #123Pledge and the collaborative efforts championed by the Food Is Never Waste Coalition.” The ‘123 Pledge’ is coordinated by Champions 12.3, UN Environment Programme (UNEP), and UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). It is also supported by WRAP, WWF, and Rabobank. “I fully support the ‘123 Pledge’ given the critical importance of tackling food loss and waste if we are to deliver against our collective climate goals. To deliver this we need action across the supply chain, from farm to fork,” said Richard Swannell, interim CEO, WRAP. “Helping citizens and companies reduce food loss and waste has never been more salient given the global food crises we are all facing. WRAP will work with governments, businesses and people to reduce costly food waste at home and across the supply chain as part of our shared global ambition to reduce the enormous contribution food waste makes to climate change, and keeping 1.5 alive.” Groups taking the ‘123 Pledge’ must meet a number of requirements designed to ensure impact, progress and transparency toward a worldwide goal of halving food loss and waste by 2030, in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goal 12.3. Commitments must include a climate angle, be timebound, and measurable. Those taking the Pledge must commit to providing annual progress reports to the Food Is Never Waste Coalition or to Champions 12.3. Annual progress reports will contribute to the Global Stocktake (GST), which will conclude at COP28 in 2023. Commitments must also tie to at least one of five priority areas:
  1. Integrating food loss and waste reduction into country and company climate strategies;
  2. Reducing food loss and waste along supply chains;
  3. Stimulating action at the national and subnational (city) level;
  4. Measuring, reporting and creating policy and regulatory frameworks for food loss and waste reduction; and
  5. Supporting behavior change at the consumer level through awareness, education and enabling conditions.
In addition to promoting a key climate action, the Pledge’s organizers hope to ultimately help families save money during times of high food prices by spurring actions that will help them understand how to ensure more of what they buy gets eaten. British households are now spending £780 per year on average on food they throw out, with similar figures across Europe and North America. Retailers, governments and others can help consumers better understand the cost savings and simple steps to preserve food such as meal planning and using their freezer more effectively to store leftovers. Already, a number of commitments have been pledged, including:
  1. The Government of The Netherlands has committed to make an active effort to make the Farm-to-Fork strategy more ambitious at EU level. Now the Farm-to Fork Strategy aims to reduce food waste at consumption and retail level. The Netherlands will make an effort, within the EU to achieve the goal of reducing food loss and waste in the entire food chain, under the Farm to Fork Strategy, which is at the heart of the European Green Deal.
  2. Unilever has committed to continue to focus on halving food waste in its direct operations by 2025. Its Hellmann’s brand will inspire and enable 100 million consumers every year till 2025 to be more resourceful with their food at home and waste less. They are expanding the geographical scope of their consumer-facing program covering North America, Latin America and Europe with country focus on US, CA, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, UK, Spain, Greece.
  3. Rabobank has committed to execute a new series of Food Waste Challenges in 2023 to help 75 foodservice clients in The Netherlands with an average of 35% food waste reduction. It’s part of Rabobank’s – a food and agriculture bank operating in this sector for 125 years – belief that reducing food loss and waste is one of the top three levers to reduce carbon emissions and is important work toward a dream of a net positive food system.
  4. World Resources Institute has committed to work through Champions 12.3 with farmer-facing companies to engage 200,000 smallholder farmers to start to tackle on-farm and near-farm food losses by the end of 2024, with a longer term goal of those farmers halving farm and near-farm losses by 2030.
  5. WWF has committed to leveraging its global network of offices to influence governments and industries to immediately meet the call to action.
  6. WRAP has pledged to deliver food loss and waste projects aligned with the Pledge impact areas in countries with a combined population of over one billion by the year 2030.
  7. Too Good to Go has committed to 1) encouraging and supporting governments in 10 countries to shape and improve food waste policy measures through its public affairs engagement; rescuing 1 billion Magic Bags of surplus food from going to waste through its mobile app; and 3) raising food waste awareness with 250 million consumers through its awareness campaigns focused on date labelling, school food waste and more.
  8. Costa Rican FLW Network commits to improve its efforts in food loss and waste awareness, research and networking, resulting in at least three successful intervention cases by 2025, as expressed as a percentage of food loss and waste reduction – and its equivalent emissions – to be shared and scaled.
  9. LeanPath has committed to working with its client partners to prevent an amount of food waste equivalent to 50 million meals by 2025.
  10. Steven M. Finn has committed to developing graduate level course and webinar/blog content to raise awareness and directly educate hundreds of citizens by the end of 2025 on the scope and scale of the food waste challenge, the critical linkage between food waste and the SDGs, and solutions and change initiatives to accelerate food waste reduction in line with Target 12.3.
“If we’re going to address the dual climate and biodiversity crisis, we can’t ignore the connection to food loss and waste. Our government and business leaders must recognize this connection and halt the expansion of agriculture at the expense of nature,” said Pete Pearson, global initiative lead for the Food Circularity program at WWF. “We have the tools to maximize the availability of food for humans and feed for animals while also addressing global food insecurity – but we can’t do it without making the reduction of food loss and waste a global imperative. WWF is committed to leveraging our global network of offices to influence governments and industries to immediately meet our call to action.”