RCL Foods, a leading food producer in the Southern African region, was looking to replace the cardboard cartons for its Mageu drink – the traditional non-alcoholic and non-dairy drink made from fermented mealie pap (maize meal). Keeping in mind the hot climate, RCL Foods was moreover looking for a packaging solution that would extend the shelf life of the drink, safeguard the product’s quality and provide it with a new refreshed look. The Ampack’s aseptic filling machine now fills the Mageu drink in high density plastic bottles (HDPE). Aseptic is the highest possible hygiene level, allowing for up to one year shelf life outside of the cooling chain.
The Ampack filling machine, the ultimate choice by RCL Foods, was designed according to the latest hygiene guidelines, ease of use and productivity in mind. Throughout the whole filling process, the packaging material is thoroughly decontaminated and the product is kept in sterile conditions to avoid any loss in quality. In terms of speed, the solution is capable of handling three different bottle sizes (250, 500 milliliters and 1 liter), with format changes taking below 20 minutes and total speeds of up to 14,000 bottles per hour depending on the packaging format.The bottles are made of HDPE material, which has high barriers in order to protect the unique product from deterioration by external factors such as sunlight or oxygen. Handling various products with different levels of viscosity, it gives RCL Foods the flexibility of extending its production in the future. An added value of this project was also the quick and efficient cooperation between both companies, which resulted in Ampack designing and assembling the machine in just 10 months. In the end, RCL Foods received what it was promised and the African market gained a long-awaited alternative for packing its traditional drink in a more hygienic and secure way. “Seeing the results, we gained trust both in the technology and Bosch’ diligent service and will definitely discuss more projects in the future,” summarized Johan Niemand, operations executive at Beverages unit at RCL Foods.
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