Refrigerated and frozen foods manufacturers are an important—and growing—segment of the food industry. In fact, Transparency Market Research, Albany, N.Y., estimates the global frozen food industry will grow steadily to $293.75 billion by 2019—just over $69 billion more than in 2012.

To help brand owners keep up in their respective segments, PACK EXPO Las Vegas and Pharma EXPO 2015, set to take place Sept. 28-30 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, will bring together 2,000 leading industry suppliers to offer an unrivaled range of solutions and insights.

Paper-based packaging

There are a number of benefits associated with the use of paper-based packaging. First, paper is a far more recyclable material than any other available in the market, and is also a renewable resource.

Consumers also want the food they purchase to be fresh. That’s why the prime purpose of packaging is to protect and preserve products. Paper-based packaging can be enhanced with solutions such as solid unbleached sulfate paperboards, which provide a moisture barrier to help keep frozen foods fresh. These same paperboards can also help maintain lower temperatures inside the package—even when it is not refrigerated—keeping products fresh longer and reducing waste.

Another major driver for refrigerated and frozen foods packaging is the need for a sturdy and lightweight material that has minimal impact on the environment. The packaging should protect the product throughout the supply chain and not jeopardize the quality of the package itself.

Finally, paper-based packaging affords an excellent print surface for graphics and can be configured in a wide variety of shapes and structures for maximum appeal and engagement.

Integration of automation and robotics

To increase production and stay ahead of the curve, the industry will continue to see manufacturers integrate automation and robotics more fully into the supply chain. Rather than slower and more tedious manual processes, robotic systems can accurately and safely handle food at increased speeds. For example, a robotic system that can pick up a bag of frozen fruits from the conveyor and then stack it with other bags into a larger corrugated package can save significant time at end-of-line operations. It also allows workers to dedicate their efforts and time to tasks where human control is paramount.

Improved sanitary designs that allow automated components to come into direct contact with food products will also continue to drive the increased adoption of robotics. Other forces include end-of-arm-tooling and vision sensors, which improve precision and product handling while also enabling automated systems to distinguish differences in size, shape and color.

PACK EXPO offers the right solutions

This September, PACK EXPO Las Vegas, owned and produced by PMMI, The Association for Packaging and Processing Technologies, Reston, Va., will showcase the latest innovations from world-class solutions providers in over 40 vertical markets. Enhancing the show floor experience are educational features, including free seminars at the Innovation Stage, and face-to-face consultations at the Food Safety Summit Recourse Center, brought to you by the Food Safety Summit, a BNP Media brand.

The Brand Zone will feature innovative packaging materials and state-of-the-art labeling and decorating technologies, while the Center for Trends and Technologies: Improving Production Through Innovation (CTT) (booth C-4829), sponsored by Rockwell Automation and its Partner Network,will spotlight relevant, cutting-edge trends and technologies.

Also, for the first time in Las Vegas, PACK EXPO will co-host Pharma EXPO, produced in partnership by PMMI and the International Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering (ISPE), Tampa, Fla. Combined, the shows will create an excellent opportunity for the cross pollination of information across industries.

PACK EXPO Las Vegas and Pharma EXPO 2015 will be held Sept. 28-30 at the Las Vegas Convention Center.

For more information and to register, visit Don’t forget to check out Refrigerated & Frozen Foods’ booth #8404.