Food wastage is a massive problem in the U.S., with the country discarding roughly 40 percent of its food. Edible food is wasted throughout every stage of the food production and retail chain: during manufacturing, processing, and distribution, and in restaurants and homes.
Food and beverage manufacturing facilities play a crucial role in solving the country’s food wastage problem. Most waste in food processing plants is generated when paring and scrapping edible portions, such as crusts, peels, and skins from food.
Overproduction, spillage, product losses, product rejects, and defective machinery also contribute to large amounts of food waste. These production inefficiencies not only lead to food wastage, but they also affect the productivity and bottom line of food processing facilities.
Food & Beverage manufacturing facilities need to look at their processing and packaging operations and find opportunities to reduce their waste. Here’s how plant managers can increase food production efficiency and minimize product losses.
Inefficient product flows often cause product losses in large-scale Food & Beverage processing facilities. Plant managers can look into their plant design to create a more effective production line.
Some product loss occurs when machines are cleaned. Usable product residue is left in the machines and is washed away during cleaning. One solution is to choose equipment pieces designed to run much longer between cleanings.
Product diversity also contributes to wastage in food processing plants. The larger the product range is, the more opportunities there are for food wastage. Producing various products means using different ingredients and processes, which requires multiple line changes and production cycles. The need for equipment cleaning also doubles.
Production lines should be designed in the most efficient way possible. The production floor should be compact enough to shorten the distance when transferring products from one line to another but wide enough to allow comfortable movement among the workers.
You can significantly reduce product losses during the packaging stage by choosing the right equipment. Piston fillers, custom fluid dispensing nozzles, and other automated packaging machines improve filling accuracy, minimizing or eliminating accidental spillage and product losses.
Plant managers may also consider packaging equipment that fulfills more than one function to reduce the need for transfers between machines. These equipment types reduce the number of machines you have to clean, lowering your water consumption.
Apart from streamlining the packaging process and machinery, food manufacturing plants must design packages that prolong the product’s shelf life. Spoilage contributes to food wastage among consumers. Food containers that preserve the product reduce food wastage further along the food distribution chain.
Food manufacturing plants must consider their processing and packaging methods from a holistic perspective. How does their production process affect the rest of food distribution and consumption? Enacting changes and improvements benefit not only their bottom line and business but the environment as well.
Enabling Agile, Efficient Food Production
At Volumetric Technologies, we understand the need for high-performing equipment in food production. We specialize in accurate, custom filling and packaging machines for the food and beverage industry, among others. These products and solutions help improve your production efficiency, increasing your overall operational performance.
Contact us today for inquiries about our products.