Paper envelope: simple modifications to existing KHS packaging machines

All KHS Innopack machines of the Advanced series can be easily converted.

  • The ecological alternative of the turnkey supplier available since 2020
  • Two options: extension of the current packaging portfolio or complete conversion
  • Low investment cost and rapid production recovery

Dortmund – Simple conversion for high flexibility: The new packaging alternative from KHS, which wraps beverage cans in paper instead of foil, can also be retrofitted to existing Innopack machines manufactured by the system supplier from Dortmund . Customers can either opt for more flexibility by switching between film and paper packaging as needed, or switch to paper altogether.

Since 2020, KHS has provided an installation on its packaging machines for wrapping beverage cans in paper. In order to offer customers maximum flexibility, the new function has been integrated into a combined machine: whether wrap-around packaging, tray packaging or blocks with or without film or paper packaging , the new system solution can handle a wide range of secondary packaging.

Paper may be a relatively new packaging material in the beverage market; especially as an alternative to plastic, however, this material is increasingly capturing the interest of beverage fillers. Paper packaging responds to consumer demand for alternative and environmentally friendly packaging materials. However, as not every beverage producer wishes to install a completely new machine, the paper packaging unit is now also available as a conversion option. This means that bottling companies can react quickly and easily to marketing trends and consumer demands using existing Innopack packaging machines.

Replacement or addition
KHS offers two upgrade options. If paper packaging is to definitively replace shrink film as secondary packaging, it suffices to substitute two modules; the configuration of the machine can remain practically the same. Here, the old film wrapping module is replaced by the newly developed module which can process paper. The shrink tunnel is also replaced by a module that folds and glues the paper.

Beverage producers who do not wish to compromise on secondary packaging flexibility can retrofit the new KHS packaging system as an additional option on their existing machine. In this case, the paper wrapping unit is adapted and the paper folding and gluing module is installed on the machine additionally.

Single switch
Once the modules are mounted, changing materials does not require any conversion other than standard format changes. As soon as the packaging materials have been changed and the hot melt devices are ready for operation, production can begin.

“Conversion is a simple affair on all Advanced Series machine types,” says Uwe Bartholemy, technical support manager for packaging at the KHS service division. This is mainly facilitated by the modular design of the KHS Innopack machines. So a leap forward for the industry when it was launched in 2000, this plant engineering has long since established itself as a standard. “Generally speaking, we can also convert older machines in this way. Here we carefully examine each individual case to check whether the control unit needs an update or not, for example.

technically simple
From a technical point of view, on KHS Innopack packaging machines with shrink tunnel, only the existing film packaging module has to be replaced by the advanced module for paper packaging. This can then process both materials. Wrappers without a shrink wrap module have the new module installed as an extension. Unlike the old machine segment, this now also has a gluing station that glues the paper under the package. Packers also need a paper folding and gluing module – in addition to or replacing the shrink tunnel – where the packages are closed.

Conversion costs are much lower than investing in a new machine. In addition, only a partial commissioning of the current formats is necessary because these have already been configured for the existing machine modules. New formats can also be implemented with less effort than required for existing formats. Incidentally, when asked which of the two variants – replacement or addition – will be more in demand in the future, Bartholemy has a clear answer. “Paper packaging is still a relatively new form of secondary packaging. In view of future market developments, many bottlers want to keep all their options open. So I suspect that the flexible combination machine will prove to be an extremely attractive proposition for our customers.

At a Glance: Converting Packaging to Paper

Application areas
Beverage and food boxes (all sizes)
Beverage cartons
Other cylindrical and quadratic packing styles
Pre-packaged products

Two variants
Conversion of the machine to switch from film to paper packaging as secondary packaging: replacement of the film packaging modules and the shrink tunnel by the paper packaging and paper folding and gluing modules
Conversion to create a combined machine for the flexible processing of film and paper: replacement of the packaging module and addition of the paper folding and gluing module

Low investment cost
Only a partial commissioning of existing formats
Faster resumption of production