Even within the same industry, it is rare that any two packaging systems will be identical. There are, however, some common traits for packaging machinery that can normally be found within specific industries.
Some industries, for example, will include a specific type of packaging machine on their line out of simple necessity. Perhaps the best example of this is container cleaning equipment. Whether running a semi-automatic or automatic packaging system, the food and beverage industry and the pharmaceutical industry must ensure that both their packaging and their packaging process are sanitary. As a result, these industries must clean or rinse bottles before the product is actually introduced. Container cleaning equipment will use water, air or some other solution to remove dust, debris and other contaminants from bottles prior to the filling, capping and labeling of the product. While the rinsing machines themselves may differ, the inclusion of such a machine on the packaging system is almost always a given.
Certain filling machines will also appear more often in certain industries. As most people are aware, the most popular package for bottled water is a clear plastic bottle. This package of choice, combined with the fact that water is a low viscosity, free-flowing liquid, makes the overflow filling machine the perfect solution for bottled water plants. An overflow filler uses a fill to level principle that ensures each and every bottle will reach a consistent level even when the interior volume of the bottles varies slightly. For products in clear containers, this level fill adds to the aesthetic value of the product when it reaches the shelf. Uneven or inconsistent fills may also lead to the appearance of cheating the consumer out of product if a bottle seems less than completely full. Overflow fillers remove such concerns in the bottled water industry. used food machinery
Certain subdivisions of the household goods industry are also likely to use a specific type of filling machine. Lotions, toothpaste, gels and other higher viscosity products will normally take advantage of the ability of pump filling machines or piston fillers to move thicker products. These filling machines can also handle products with particulates and will appear in the food and beverage industry for salad dressings, sauces and other similar products.
Nitrogen purge machinery is also more likely to appear in a packaging line for foods and beverages. A nitrogen purge system can be used to rid a container or container headspace of oxygen that may have detrimental effects on a product. Replacing the oxygen in a container with nitrogen can extend the shelf life of certain products while also preserving the color, flavor and texture of the product.
While screw caps will likely be the most popular type of cap used on a majority of products for some time, there are still certain industries that will use specialty type caps. The wine industry, for example, continues to make use of Roll On Pilfer Proof (or ROPP) caps. For this reason, almost any packaging system for wine will include an ROPP capper. Still, not all wine bottles are sealed with an ROPP cap, and spindle cappers and chuck capping machinery for screw type caps will be seen across almost every industry and product type.