NitroHotfill in China – premiere with regional support
More energy-efficiency, a more appealing bottle design, and material savings – there’s quite a lot to be said for the NitroHotfill process from Krones. And nonetheless it took a few years until the Chinese market had recognised the process’s added value. Meanwhile, though, in the shape of Danone, a client has been producing its beverages in China as well using the internationally field-proven method – not least a success for the team of specialists at Krones’ facility in Taicang.
I have already posted an article on the possible uses and advantages of the NitroHotfill process. Now Danone has recently begun production in China with this field-proven method – and for this purpose has retrofitted NitroHotfill to an existing line at its facility in Wuhan. Commissioned back in 2013, the line features a Contiform H 20 (Heatset), a Modulfill VFJ filler and a Sleevematic labeller, and has been dimensioned for 32,000 containers per hour.
In future, the line will be used to bottle two varieties of RTD (ready to drink) tea: the green tea Mate Rose and the black tea Rooibos Berry. This creates several advantages for Danone, as I mentioned earlier: at the PET bottle itself, material can be saved, while at the same time less flushing air and thus energy are being used in the production process. What’s more, Danone has been able to create a bottle design that would not have been possible with the previous Hotfill technology – one that even for sectoral outsiders can be expected to prove visually persuasive at first glance.
When developing the design, Danone was assisted by the specialists of the Primary Packaging Department at Krones Taicang. Our colleagues in China not only contributed their specialised knowledge here, but also scored highly in terms of their intimate familiarity with the Chinese market. So Danone benefited from direct contact with the regional container design team in China, and thus swiftly translated this development thrust into hands-on reality without any time-delays. This team, by the way, has been operating for ten years now – and at the CBB in October visitors to the fair will have an opportunity for some direct mutual feedback with them.