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Improving safety and quality with X-rays

19 March 2022

Find out how an X-ray machine has improved safety and quality of dried fruit and vegetable snacks without affecting productivity. 

Based in Kalisz in Central Poland, PAULA Ingredients specialises in the production of snacks made from dried fruits and vegetables. Aimed at demanding target audience – health-conscious consumers – the highest quality standards are essential.

Traditionally the company used a combination of metal detectors, magnets and sifting equipment to check for foreign bodies in the delicate bulk product which comes in a wide variety of shapes including cubes, slices and flakes.  However, this process   still allowed occasional unwanted foreign bodies to pass undetected. 

To overcome this issue the company installed an X-ray inspection system – an  Ishida IX-GN-4043 – to help enhance its product safety and quality while continuing to deliver the high production throughput required.  

Since installation of the X-ray machine, PAULA Ingredients has experienced a significant improvement in foreign body detection, with the quality control team reporting the detection of impurities including metal, glass and dense plastic.

The IX-GN is in operation 24 hours a day, 5 days a week, handling around 300kg of product per hour to deliver 36 tons of health snacks per week.  

An advantage of the IX-GN-4043 is said to be its simple and intuitive operation.  Product changeovers can be carried out in a matter of seconds simply by changing the product pre-sets.   While operation of the machine is easy, Ishida also provided full initial training for operators and engineers to ensure its ongoing performance. 

Commenting on the solution, Stanislaw Jaskiewicz, technical director at PAULA Ingredients, said: “Our intensive use of the X-ray machine has not affected its functionality or reliability. Easy maintenance of the machine enables us to quickly clean the conveyor.  Some of our products contain natural sugars and can be sticky.  This would occasionally cause problems with other inspection solutions, but with the Ishida X-ray system we have overcome this issue.”

The Ishida IX-GN-4043 was supplied and installed by Ishida’s long-term partner in Poland, Fenix Systems, who carried out a thorough review of PAULA Ingredients’ requirements to ensure the most appropriate solution and best positioning of the machine in the factory.

“Having now operated the machine for almost a year, Ishida has become our brand of choice for the future,” concludes Jaskiewicz. Indeed, the success of the installation has resulted in the company already considering the purchase of a second X-ray machine.

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