Packaging experts unite to offer “future-proof” flexibility, affordability and multi-functionality to meet the diverse demands of the industry

Leading UK packaging specialist Xact is set to expand into new markets with state-of-the-art, multiformat packaging machines supplied by Spanish packaging technology innovator IRTA Group Packaging under a new partnership to help brands and retailers “future-proof” their packaging processes.

The two businesses, each with over 30 years market experience, have joined forces to bring two new Vertical Form Fill sealing machines (VFFS) to the UK for the first time, both of which are capable of handling different packaging sizes, formats and materials.

The IRTA VX STB DOY is a multiformat bag packaging machine, which can create the five most common, vertical pack shapes: Doy, pillow, envelope, block bottom, plus four and five seals. It can handle up to 100 bags per minute and is adaptable to any product type, making it perfect for contract packers who need the ability to switch rapidly between products and packaging types.

The IRTA TR is a hygienic, vertical multiformat unit particularly developed with frozen food in mind. Handling up to 150 packs per minute and 100% washable, it is perfect for everything from frozen fruit and vegetables to meat and fish.

Both machines boast low energy consumption, teamed with high efficiency and multi-functionality, including the ability to work with different packaging materials from heat sealable paper to PE and recyclable/recycled materials, while using less material than more common HFFS (Horizontal Form Fill) machines that are typically used for volume production. Importantly, they come at a mid-market price point, yet there is no compromise on build quality or functionality.

Paul Bennion, Xact Director, explained why the new partnership is important and the benefits it will bring to the food industry: “The UK market is increasingly competitive, meaning retailers have ever-changing demands in terms of products and packaging formats. The two new IRTA machines offer extensive functionality and flexibility to help businesses future-proof packaging production to meet those requirements.

“Xact has been the leader in net packaging for the fresh produce market for the past 30 years and these two innovative packaging machines not only allow us to expand, but also meet the diverse needs of businesses catering to very different requirements from their customers.

“We’re looking particularly to the nuts, dried fruit and snacks market, frozen food and contract packaging companies that need the ability to easily switch between product lines. Our partnership with IRTA to supply these two new machines, enables us to do that.”

Raquel Hidalgo, IRTA Group Packaging’s International Sales and Distributor Networking Manager, added: “IRTA is going through an ambitious expansion process. We have supplied different machines in the past to the UK for the ice industry and now we need to consolidate our presence in the UK food industry. To do that we wanted to partner with a reputable UK company with good market knowledge, which is why we chose Xact.

“Both our VFFS machines and packaging solutions are an excellent fit with Xact’s profile…and will enable us to build a strong brand name in the UK food industry.”