Today’s range of snack bars includes products designed to support certain health aspects. These functional bars meet almost every single nutritional requirement and are popular among all age groups.
The conscious consumer
Due to better diagnoses of food intolerances and more frequent food scandals, almost all age and consumer groups look out for information on ingredients, manufacturing processes and product origins. Consumers demand ever healthier and purer ingredients and additives. To communicate full transparency from “Farm to Fork” is becoming increasingly important for manufactures. Bars should therefore not only be made with clean, healthy ingredients, but should also be produced and packaged in a hypoallergenic environment. Lastly, the right kind of packaging contributes to consumer decisions in front of the supermarket shelves. Key consumer information should be clearly visible and the packaging should be high quality, keep the product fresh for longer, represent brand quality and, last but not least, it should be environmentally friendly.
Range of bar formats requires an efficient hygiene concept
Easy and quick cleaning processes are a prerequisite for the production of functional foods. Cross-contamination, especially of allergenic ingredients, has to be avoided at all costs. With sticky bars and/or nut products, the contamination level is particularly high, which means cleaning is crucial. The goal is to keep downtimes as short as possible. Two factors are decisive: gentle product handling and hygienic system design. Furthermore, optimal transport is continuous and gentle. It prevents friction, while rounded lateral guides reduce breakage and ultimately prevent the accumulation of dirt in the system. Integrated washing systems can be used on conveyor belts throughout the production process. This minimizes downtime since the frequency and intensity of complete cleaning is reduced. When operated continuously, Bosch Packaging’s integrated conveyer belt cleaning system can be run for 30 days on two 12-hour shifts without requiring downtime for a complete clean.
Bars 4.0: Prepared for manufacturing the bar of the future
Manufacturer benefits can be maximized with a holistic bar system: performance and availability, simple handling, fast format changes and cleaning, minor maintenance and layout flexibility. In combination, these factors contribute to a high level of OEE which manufacturers can now improve upon even more thanks to new Industry 4.0 applications. Process data and production parameters are available in real time on the HMI as well as on mobile devices, which means operators can intervene quickly and precisely – often even before a problem arises.
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