BRISTOL, UK — Unilever Best Foods (Nederland) recently had the task of sourcing a machine supplier that could handle a very special pack design for its Becel (Flora) pro.activ spread. The requirement was to combine the cartoning with an automatic product feeding system, plus the insertion of an information booklet, with a speed requirement in excess of 220 packs per minute.
Kliklok Woodman was awarded the contract and commenced build of 3 complete packaging systems – comprising Servo IPTU (Intelligent Product Tranfer Units) feeding the margarine tubs broadside leading into a specially designed conveyor system that accurately positions the product to allow accurate placement of the booklet into the indented lid of the plastic container.
The booklet feeder, which is servo driven and integrated into the infeed conveyor of the ‘Prima’ end-load cartoner, was a key element of the line’s design. Marc Olthoff – Unilever’s project manager – says “Kliklok Woodman offered a feed geometry which allows accurate positioning of the leaflet into the tub lid, and this was a key factor in our decision to place the orders with them. Kliklok Woodman were able to demonstrate this to us in the early stages of the project. This gave us a high level of confidence that an area which we perceived to be tricky could easily be accomplished. There was an added incentive if Kliklok Woodman could achieve a specific speed target – and this was readily achieved “.
The special 5 crease sleeve was optimized with Unilever so that a common profile was available to suit the many countries that sell the highly successful pro.activ product.
Kliklok Woodman’s unique rotary feeder erects this special carton and accurately shapes the pack to allow the inner product retaining tab to be folded and formed – this then locks the product in place in the open-ended sleeve .The cartoner used was a specially customised version of Kliklok’s world-renowned Prima, built to Unilever’s mechanical and electrical specifications.
Special design emphasis was invested to ensure that the equipment suits the various local operating requirements – and meets Unilever’s TPM standards.