The Netherlands is known for its cheese, amongst other things, and this year it is additionally known for being the home of EMPACK2019. According to the show website, it is the only show organized in the Netherlands for the packaging industry, attracting over 6,000 visitors in 2017.
It’s expected that packaging specialists, purchasers, production managers, logistics managers and operations managers will be walking the floor and learning about new technologies offered by the over 300 exhibitors … and exploring different cheeses if they choose to explore the area while they are there.
The Netherlands Tourism website explains that the history of cheese making in the region stretches back over 1600 years, and has led to the area becoming one of the leading cheese exporters in Europe. According to Holland.com, the Dutch produce and export hundreds of millions of tons of cheese every year. And some well-known cheeses, like Gouda and Edam, were named for this country’s towns in which they were originally made and sold.
The Government of the Netherlands granted protected status for its star export in 2010. In a press release, the Minister Verburg of the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality reported that cheeses labelled ’Gouda Holland’ or ‘Edam Holland’ are now guaranteed to originate from the Netherlands. According to Verburg, “The European Commission has designated Gouda Holland cheese and Edam Holland cheese as Protected Geographical Indications (PGIs). That means these cheeses are certified to have been produced in the Netherlands using traditional methods with milk from Dutch cows and to have undergone a natural aging process. The European PGI logo ensures the high quality associated with the origin of the cheeses.”
You can be sure that any cheese producer from the Netherlands is dedicated to getting a quality product into consumer hands – their country’s reputation depends on it.
One of the ways to help ensure their cheese is free from physical contaminants is with packaged food inspection equipment. Historically, detecting foreign metal objects in dairy products has been challenging since metal detectors are often fooled by “product effect” with high-moisture, high-salt containing products like cheese. The conductive properties of these products affect the magnetic field generating a signal indicating metal is present when it is not.
However, there is now multiscan food metal detector technology, that can be seen at our booth, which overcomes the limitations of fixed single or dual frequency metal detectors, by scanning up to five user-selectable frequencies running at a time. This technology provides unmatched sensitivity and the highest probability of finding ferrous, non-ferrous, and stainless steel metal contaminants in challenging applications such as cheese, and other applications with high product effect.
As the trend toward pre-weighed packaged cheese increases with the rise of single-serve, sliced and shredded options, X-ray inspection equipment for packaged products should also be considered. In addition to detecting foreign objects, X-ray systems, can, for example, measure slice thickness and count the number of individually wrapped cheese sticks. X-ray inspection is also effective for Swiss cheese and other non-uniform products.
Weight consistency is also critical to producing a quality product. To meet labeling requirements and ensure that consumers get what they pay for, checkweighers play a key role. They help control overfills minimizing the amount of give away. Checkweighers can quickly detect package weight deviations, allowing fast adjustments that otherwise would lead to production down time, and wasted materials and ingredients.
Keep in mind that any inspection technology used in a dairy plant must be robust, functional and fully cleanable. This includes sanitary harsh washdown and extreme temperature cycling. The equipment must also be designed to minimize the potential for bacteria to grow and be easy to disassemble for complete cleaning.
You can discuss all these technologies with our packaged product weighing and inspection experts, and even see some equipment in action, at Booth 1.D145 at EMPACK. Can’t make the show? Visit our event page that outlines the different technologies available for food weighing and inspection. In addition, you might enjoy reading our white paper, Ensuring product quality and safety in the dairy industry.
And if you haven’t gotten enough information about cheese, the people of the Netherlands love their dairy product specialty so much, you can even visit the Holland Cheese Museum in Almaar.
Hope to see you at the show.
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Download white paper, Ensuring product quality and safety in the dairy industry