GLK Foods, LLC of Appleton, WI, the largest sauerkraut producer in the world, relies on flexible equipment that handles frequent changeovers with minimal downtime. The family-owned manufacturer and contract packager dates to 1900 and currently manufactures sauerkraut at plants in Bear Creek, WI and Shortsville, NY.
When a labeler on a line at Bear Creek could no longer meet production requirements, company personnel began looking for a replacement that could handle frequent changeovers, nine different round glass and plastic containers, and multiple sizes and shapes of cut-and-stack paper labels.
After seeing the wetLAN 110 cold glue labeler equipped with Clean Design displayed by Langguth GmbH at Anuga Food Tech in March 2012, GLK Foods asked Langguth America Ltd. of Waterloo, Ontario to prepare a quote. Later in the year, the sauerkraut packer purchased the wetLAN 110 labeler with Clean Design exhibited at PACK EXPO International 2012 so installation could occur before its busy summer season.
GLK Foods personnel installed the machine over a weekend in April 2013 in preparation for a Monday morning startup. The labeler completed three flawless changeovers during its first day in operation.
The machine not only provides quick changeover, it also offers enhanced food safety and operator-protective features with additional safety guarding, stainless steel components and minimal accumulation surfaces. The IP65-rated wetLAN 110’s Clean Design also withstands the acidic brine of the product and the plant’s cleaning regimen.
Sized to run up to 300 bottles per minute, the unit has variable frequency drives that adjust machine speed to line population. The label magazine accepts spot or wrap labels of varying length. It also accommodates shaped labels with crowns on the top and bottom.
Changeover is tool-less and quick. In just a few minutes, the operator adjusts the label magazine and infeed conveyor width and, if necessary, changes the infeed screw. Compared to rotary designs, the inline labeler not only costs less initially, it also delivers a lower cost of ownership over its lifetime.
For more information:
David O’Keefe, Langguth America