Foreign matter contamination is the third leading cause of recalls in the U.S., and can cut into any manufacturer’s production and profitability with direct and indirect costs. By deploying the power of x-ray detection at different points in the production and packaging process, the risk of foreign matter contamination can be greatly reduced.
Eagle Product Inspection, Inc. offers several types of inline x-ray inspection systems designed to help meet the unique challenges and needs of the confectionery, bakery, snack and ready meal categories. Those who produce dry bulk powers, for example, can scan for contaminants, while manufacturers of ready meals with multiple compartments can deploy detection systems to check for foreign bodies in every product in each compartment.
For baked foods, cookies, ice cream and salad bags, the Eagle Pack 320 PRO inspects products on high-speed flow-wrap lines, identifying contaminants such as glass shards, metal fragments, mineral stone, some plastic and rubber compounds. The Pack 320 PRO is suitable for food products packaged in foil or metalized film and poly-wrapped products, and is powered by Eagle proprietary SimulTask™ PRO software that enables on-screen diagnostics, advanced image analysis and quality assurance traceability.
The Eagle Pack 430 PRO is also designed for inspecting baking and snack products such as breads and bakery items, cereal and crackers as well as ready meals and larger packages of family-sized products. This system scans mid-sized packages such as chips, crackers and cookies, among others, and features superior detection and automatic rejection of recall-causing contaminants like glass shards, metal fragments, mineral stone, some plastic and rubber compounds. In addition to finding hard-to-detect contaminants in the raw, in-process and packaged state, the Pack 430 PRO can be used with optional Material Discrimination X-ray (MDX) technology to enhance contaminant detection in difficult product applications, such as bagged granola or bagged salad. In addition, SimulTask™ PRO software powers the system, while exclusive TraceServer™ software allow for enhanced detection and traceability.
X-ray systems like the Eagle Pack 320 PRO and Pack 430 PRO machines offer other benefits to help confectionery, bakery and snack and ready meal manufacturers protect their costs. “X-ray isn’t just a check to see if something has a piece of metal in it—it’s something that improves your process,” points out Steve Dowd, inspection specialist for Eagle Product Inspection. “Everyone is watching their bottom line a lot tighter now, and having information on what your line is doing is important if you can react to it.”
According to Dowd, Eagle’s powerful tools provide value even after the initial inspection: x-ray systems collect data, including images, to be stored centrally and conveniently. If a problem is later found, a manufacturer can quickly access the information to demonstrate their effort to detect possible contaminants.