Packaging Process Optimization

Table of contents

What can actually be optimized in the packaging process?

Optimizing your packaging process is essential for staying ahead. Stretch hoods offer a versatile and efficient solution for securing palletized loads, but to fully leverage their benefits, it’s crucial to understand the various optimization opportunities available. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the ins and outs of stretch hood optimization, covering everything from cost savings to load stability testing.

How can I reduce the costs of my stretch hood machine?

  • Efficient material utilization: Optimize material format
  • Energy Savings
  • Reduction of Transport Damages through improving load unit stability
  • Minimize Waste

Are there ways for me to optimize my film consumption?

  • Select appropriate film material and format
  • Choose the right film thickness
  • Optimize machine settings

Can I reduce my CO2 emissions?

  • Reduce material consumption
  • Utilize post-consumer recycled (PCR) materials
  • Extend lifespan of your machine through service
  • Convert your machine from hydraulic to electric

Are there options to increase my process reliability?

  • Optimize machine and film interaction
  • Regular Service

How can I become more time efficient?

  • Improve process reliability with the right film and machine settings
  • Minimize handling and processing times for productivity gains
  • Implement rationalization of workflows and automation of tasks through new technologies

Is there a possibility to reduce my energy consumption?

  • Use energy-efficient machines or upgrade possibilities for your existing machine
  • Convert your stretch hood machine from hydraulic to electric

How can you help me improving my workplace safety?

  • One concrete example: upgrade your software to make it easy to unroll film blockages by pressing a button instead of climbing into the machine to cut it out

What can improve the stability of my pallets?

  • Optimize Packaging Scheme
  • Optimize Load Unit Stability

Which factors influence the optimization possibilities?

Product & Packaging

Consider goods dimensions, weight, fragility, and behavior during transport to determine the most suitable packaging scheme. Ensuring proper load containment and stability during transit and storage is crucial.

Machine Choice:

The selection of a suitable stretch hood machine is crucial for achieving optimum results. Different models from various manufacturers cater to different pallet sizes and orientations. Adjusting machine settings such as film stretch percentage, hood length, and application speed according to the product and film type is essential.

Film Selection

The stretch hood film directly impacts the performance and effectiveness of the packaging solution. Choosing the right material, thickness, and properties based on specific application requirements is crucial for optimal load containment, stability, and protection of the packaged goods.

Machine-Film Interaction

Seamless interaction between the packaging machine and the stretch hood film is necessary for consistent and reliable results. Aligning machine settings such as film tension, cutting, and sealing parameters ensures optimal film application and load containment. Regular maintenance of the packaging machine is also essential to prevent issues and maintain performance over time.

Transport Considerations

Considering the means of transport used for shipping and distribution is vital transportation mode, handling conditions, and environmental factors must be considered to ensure the packaged goods remain secure and intact throughout the entire supply chain journey.

How can these potential optimizations be implemented in practice?

In our efforts to optimize stretch hood packaging, we don’t just offer theoretical solutions—we provide practical, hands-on experiences to ensure success. At our state-of-the-art Technology Center, we bring together expertise in film production, stretch hood machine operation, and load stability testing. Here, all potential optimizations come to life as we produce film, test it on our stretch hood machines with our customer goods, and rigorously assess load stability. Let’s explore how these real-world tests drive tangible improvements in your packaging process.

Production of the film with different materials and formats

The production of stretch hood film is a critical aspect of optimizing packaging operations. Key considerations include:

  • Using EVA: Ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) is a popular material choice for stretch hood film due to its excellent elasticity and clarity. Leveraging EVA in film production can enhance stretchability and load stability.
  • Stretch Hoods without EVA: Stretch Hoods without EVA are a more affordable solution for products that are form-fitting and doesn’t have special requirements on packaging. This film nevertheless offers good product protection with high puncture resistance.
  • Stretch Hoods with Post-Consumer Recyclate: Embracing sustainable practices, such as utilizing post-consumer recyclate (PCR), in stretch hood film production reduces environmental impact and promotes closed-loop principles.
  • Coloured Stretch Hoods: Offering stretch hood films in a range of colors allows for branding opportunities and facilitates product differentiation in the market.
  • Stretch Hoods with UV Protection: Incorporating UV protection additives into stretch hood films enhances their durability and longevity, particularly for outdoor storage or transportation applications.

Processing on the stretch hood machine

Optimizing stretch hood machine performance is essential for achieving efficient and effective packaging. Key areas for improvement include:

  • Optimizing Machine Settings: Fine-tuning machine parameters, such as film tension, cutting, and sealing, maximizes film usage and ensures proper load containment.
  • Upgrading Your Machine with New Grippers: Investing in new grippers improves film handling and reduces film consumption by ensuring smooth unwinding of the film, without tears or holes.
  • Upgrading Your Machine with a Film Feed System: Implementing a new Film Feed system improves film dispensing accuracy and reduces film waste, leading to cost savings and improved efficiency.
  • Upgrading Your Machine with New Suction Boxes: Upgrading suction boxes enhances film positioning and stability, resulting in more consistent and reliable packaging outcomes.
  • Upgrading Your Machine with the RHM Software: Integrating RHM’s user-friendly and advanced software solutions improves monitoring, diagnostics and optimisation of machine performance, ensuring smooth and reliable packaging operations by allowing machine parameters to be set more accurately.

Testing Load Stability

Ensuring load stability is critical for safeguarding packaged goods during transportation and storage. Our Key testing methods include:

  • Horizontal Impact: Simulates important shock and acceleration loads during horizontal transport. Various acting forces can be measured, usually in a range between 0.5 g and 0.8 g, as this corresponds approximately to the forces of a lorry braking on the road. It is also possible to simulate the coupling of rail vehicles or, for example, handling work in warehouses/distribution centres – the tests are possible with forces of up to 15g.
  • Vertical Vibration Table: Tests vertical shocks and vibrations to examine load unit behavior under different conditions. This simulates shock absorbers on a lorry, turbulence in air traffic and the effects of processing the load in warehouses.
  • Pitch & Roll module: Analyzes stress from tilting movements and rotations, simulating realistic cornering and shipping movements. The Pitch & Roll module is integrated in the Vertical Vibration Table – this interaction makes it possible to cover very application-orientated requirements, as the combination of different loads at the same time creates very realistic test conditions.
  • Climatic chamber: Evaluates the influence of climatic conditions on the strength of the packaging and the holding forces, taking into account temperature fluctuations between -25°C and 80°C and a humidity of between 15% and 98%.
  • GPS data recorder: Provides detailed transport route analyses, measuring direct and indirect influencing factors such as forces, accelerations, temperature, and humidity.

Implementing Solutions Developed in the Technology Center at the Customer's Site

The journey from innovation to implementation reaches its pinnacle when solutions developed in our Technology Center are seamlessly integrated into our customers’ operations. Here’s how we make it happen:

  • Customized Solutions: Every packaging challenge is unique, and our team works closely with customers to tailor solutions to their specific needs. Whether it’s optimizing machine settings, packaging schemes or refining packaging materials, we ensure that solutions are customized for maximum effectiveness.
  • On-Site Implementation Support: Our commitment doesn’t end in the Technology Center. We provide comprehensive on-site support during the implementation phase, guiding customers through the integration process and ensuring that solutions are successfully deployed.
  • Training and Education: Knowledge transfer is key to long-term success. We offer training programs and educational resources to empower customers with the skills and expertise needed to maintain and optimize their packaging operations effectively.
  • Continuous Improvement: Optimization is an ongoing journey, and we partner with our customers for the long haul. Through regular monitoring, analysis, and refinement, we continuously strive to enhance the efficiency, reliability, and sustainability of our customers’ packaging processes.

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