The machine will be primarily used to produce Prolamina’s Pro-Pouch, individual pouches for hot fill applications such as juice, meat, dry powders and mixes such as hot cocoa, oatmeal, soups, drink mixes and spices.
Other larger pouch applications include shelf stable food like noodle, pasta and side dish end uses.
Greg Tucker, CEO, Prolamina, told FoodProductionDaily, flexible packages offer a smaller footprint than most rigid containers allowing for cost savings from freight and storage and reducing the carbon footprint.
“We’ve seen tremendous growth in pouching as more and more CPG companies move away from rigid containers. Prolamina’s pouch business has increased by 100% over the past two years,” he said.
“The premade pouch market continues to grow at a significantly greater rate than food packaging roll stock market. This million dollar capital investment reflects the health of the flexible packaging market.
“Flexible packages are easy to handle making them consumer friendly and offer companies creative branding opportunities with more print space and enhanced graphic quality.”
The Totani BH80 pouching machine was made in Japan at Totani and has been installed at the Promalina factory in Neenah, Wisconsin, US.
“The machine was built in collaboration between Prolamina and Totani engineers and designers to meet the specific needs of our expanding customer base,” added Tucker.
“Prolamina requested the standard wide web high speed machine and then added the feature to run stand up pouches four up to maximize efficiencies.
“We added a zipper module to use the machine for more customers and this gives us the opportunity to run both zippered and non-zippered pouches on the wide web machine. We also added multiple sensor options for high quality controlled pouches.”
This is Promalina’s second factory to be equipped with Totanis machinery. The first one was at its Terrebonne facility in Quebec, Canada. Both locations produce three-sided sealed and stand up pouches from small to large; hermetic seals with and without zippers and fitments.
“We wanted to invest in a machine that was going to meet the needs of our customers and the expanding market. Therefore, we waited until we were well entrenched in the pouch market so we could rely on our experience to partner with Totani to build the best possible machine,” said Tucker.
“We wanted to capitalize on the efficiencies of scale; running wider allows for more material increasing output and offering customers speed and quality.”
The machine’s larger bed size allows for a four-up format to produce pouches of various sizes and closures. Configurations range from a basic three-side seal to the traditional stand-up pouch with zipper feature.
Prolamina produce flexible packaging including sugar packets, coated and laminated nonwoven fabrics and heat transfer labels for the food, medicine and speciality markets.
The pouch is designed to be 100% leakproof with pre-welded fitments, vertically integrated with print and lamination and can include custom closures such as zippers.