How Do Smart Options Enable Agile Processes in the Packaging?

In all industries, there is a need for more flexible and individualized production. With that, the companies also expect greater transparency and documentable processes. Overall equipment efficiency, zero downtime, and the demand for shorter production runs have created the need for smart machines and, ultimately, the smart factory. Now more than ever, it is important to keep the whole process and products clean, safe, and efficient. It becomes more important for industries like the food and beverage packaging industry. The reason is that the customers love only those particular products, which are neatly prepared and packaged. More importantly, the federal laws and regulations related to the products like hemp, CBD, and other organic items are very strict. Therefore, using 60ml bottle boxes and other important packaging solutions has become compulsory for all CBD product manufacturers.

However, packaging can become an uphill task if you have not used technology and smart solutions to complete it. The reason is that the demand is high, and you need to have all the packaging solutions with you to remain competitive in the market. Therefore, the packaging companies need to improve themselves immediately and be equipped with smart solutions. It is the only way through which they can complete the tasks more aggressively and timely. 

Learn now how a smart factory can be implemented in the packaging, food, and beverage industries.

Updating the controls architecture

  • Eliminate analog cabling and reduce costs by 15-20%
  • Simplify troubleshooting
  • Allows visibility to the sensor/device.
  • Simplify modifications
  • Reduce interruptions
  • Eliminate manual configuration of devices and sensors

Automation of guided format change and part change

  • Eliminate change errors
  • Reduces planned downtime to make changes
  • Reduces product waste from the start after a change
  • Consistent positioning every time
  • Ensures that appropriate exchange parts are exchanged.

Predictive maintenance via IO-Link

  • Improves diagnosis
  • Reduces unplanned downtime
  • Provides condition monitoring
  • Provides more accurate data
  • Reduces slowdowns and downtime of equipment
  • Reduces product waste


  • Offers accurate data and reduced errors
  • Tracking of raw materials and finished products
  • The precise date and batch code for possible recall of the product.
  • Allows you to embed robust tags in bags, pallets, containers, and accessories
  • Increase security with access control

Why is all this important?

Converting from a manufacturing process to a smart process will improve many aspects. With that, you can also remove obstacles that have been encountered in the past. In the packaging industry, downtime can be very costly because raw material has a short expiration date before it must be discarded. We have observed already that partnering with packaging firms has become one of the most difficult tasks for all industries. Therefore, Overall Equipment Efficiency (EGE) is an integral part of any process within the packaging industry. Simply put, EGE is the percentage of manufacturing time that is truly productive. Implementing an improved controls architecture, automating changes during the process, using network devices that have predictive maintenance, and incorporating RFID technology to improve traceability greatly improve EGE and reduce time spent troubleshooting recurring issues.

Through IO-Link technology and smart devices connected to IO-Link, time spent searching for the root of a problem is greatly reduced thanks to continuous diagnostics and predictive maintenance. IO-Link systems alert operators to sensor malfunctions and when preventive maintenance is required.

In contrast to preventive maintenance, which only captures 18% of machine failures and is based on a schedule, predictive maintenance is based on data that provides operators and control personnel with critical information at the moment. It helps maintain the downtime to complete the orders in time. With that, future maintenance is also necessary to keep the customers satisfied for a long time. It translates into planned downtime. In this way, you can strategically schedule your timeline around production runs. In this way, you can oppose unplanned downtime that comes without warning and could interrupt a production run.

Final Words 

Reducing the time it takes to change a machine to a different pack size allows the process to finish the batch faster than using a manual change, which in turn means a shorter production run for that line. Automated shifting permits the process to be exact every time and eliminates the risk of operator error due to more precise positioning.

Traceability using RFID can be a very important part of the smart and innovative custom printed bottle packaging boxes factory. Using RFID throughout the process – tracking raw materials, finished products, and containers leaving the facility – can greatly increase the efficiency and throughput of the process. Using RFID can even be applied to change the detection of change parts by identifying if the correct equipment is being put in or taken out during the change.

Adding smart solutions to packaging production line improves efficiency, increases production, minimizes downtime, and saves money. So, if you want to establish yourself as a reputed packaging firm, you can generate some excellent results for yourself and your industry.

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