Tim Lewis, vice president of marketing and sales, CMD Corp., talks pouch-making trends, purchasing considerations and more.
Q: Are there any trends or design innovations in pouch making you anticipate seeing in the near future?
A: Pouch and bag styles will continue to evolve with creative shapes and enhanced usability features for portability, closure-reclosure, sustainability offering and heat-ability. The significant trajectory of rigid converting to flexible formats means that brand owners and converters can offer more convenience to the consumer, and lower total packaging costs. To facilitate the ever-changing requirements to make these pouches and bags, equipment must be adaptable. This starts with sourcing equipment from a company that is capable of customization, and is knowledgeable of your process. Advanced sealing and web-handling techniques are critical now and will become more so, as sustainable materials/blends come more fully online. This isn’t going away. We’ve been working on this for 10 years – we’re ready. The cost and availability of power is important, particularly for international converters. CMD’s sustainability mission includes reducing the energy used by our equipment. This is especially critical in areas where power is premium priced, or where power surges/brownouts are common.
Q: Talk about CMD’s most popular bag/pouch making machine — why do people like it so much?
A: Worldwide, the Model 1270GDS Global Drawtape Bagmaking System is our flagship machine, popular because it produces the convenient, drawstring style bags consumers buy. This one system incorporates the film unwind, drawtape insertion and bag sealing in a compact machine that offers converters and brand owners around the world a great opportunity to expand their market share. A compact footprint, high throughput and waste-saving process-efficiency, the 1270GDS can be integrated with high-speed bag winders and packaging automation for a complete turn-key operation.
For smaller converters looking to break into the efficiency and consumer convenience of bags-on-rolls, the CMD Global Bag Machine and Winder is an affordable, compact system with excellent process efficiency, production speeds up to 450 fpm/138 mpm, and a simple, icon-based operation touch screen. The CMD 864 is also a great machine for emerging markets because it can be purchased affordably and is well-supported internationally through Ethernet capability and CMD’s service network.
For pouch converters, CMD’s exclusive Intelligent Sealing Technology can validate the quality of every pouch, every time, by marrying sophisticated programming and mechanical design to monitor, record and adjust time, heat and pressure for every stroke of the seal bars. Converters love this technology because it provides proof of quality for each pouch — essential for critical medical and food pouch packaging customers. Intelligent Sealing Technology is available as an option on most CMD pouch systems, and can offer assurance against contamination and food recalls if used properly.
Q: What are some key factors to consider when purchasing a new bag or pouch-making machine?
A: What are your production and business objectives? Reduce costs/improve margins? Add capacity? Introduce a new product? Grow your business? Check the financial strength and reputation of the supplier so they will be around to support your machine with upgrades and retrofits (get testimonials, demonstrations/test with your film/materials, ask for payback numbers/ROI). Other important considerations include:
- Flexibility for your future requirements (modular, adaptable, retrofittable).
- Service and parts.
- Capabilities of your maintenance and operator personnel — how simple is the machine to operate and maintain?
It’s not “just a bag” — it’s your business. Equipment is a critical asset — source it wisely and resist the temptation to buy predominantly on price. Price/value relationship — not price alone.
Q: Training and education is so crucial to efficient pouch making — what is CMD doing to address this requirement?
A: Commercialization, installation, service follow-up and consultant-based approach. Training at installation is part of that process. Full training programs in our facility or the customer’s. Support, Support, Support — phone, online, in person. It’s a people business. Service videos — demonstrate set up, thread up and start up for bag machines. Adaptable, iterative learning — retrofits, upgrades, we share our process knowledge to help our customers improve efficiency and produce for lower cost per unit for higher profitability.