A soft vacuum packaging system helps cheese processors optimise sustainable product quality

Sealed Air has developed a new soft vacuum packaging system with continuous flow to help cheese processors optimise product quality while improving sustainability.

The Cryovac SVS45 uses up to 50% less energy compared to systems delivering similar levels of output, while also offering improved packaging speeds and better preservation of the cheese structure, texture and taste. This new machine combines a differential pressure vacuum with controlled pressure hot sealing. The technology uses just the right amount of energy to extract air from the pack, while the cheese remains exposed to atmospheric pressure and is packed in a continuous motion to achieve high throughput.

“The technology and patented design are new to market and game-changing for cheese producers and processors,” claims Peter Thuerig, director of food packaging equipment at Sealed Air.

“The soft vacuum completely removes air, without damaging a cheese’s porous structure,” he continues. “This better protects quality and flavour, also enhances the final packaged appearance of the cheese, meeting customer expectations. These benefits are all achieved without a traditional vacuum chamber, which is far from ideal for packaging sensitive products such as cheese.”

About ten times less compressed air is used in the new machine than traditional vacuum systems, reducing energy consumption. Sustainability is further enhanced through the use of Sealed Air’s range of different Cryovac materials such as shrink bags, tubing and proprietary OptiDure bags.

The machine  is designed for Sealed Air shrink bags which weigh just 32g. “This enables cheese processors to significantly reduce material usage per pack and save hundreds of thousands of tonnes of carbon dioxide,” explains Aldo Galbusera, marketing manager EMEA cheese & SPM at Sealed Air.

Hard and semi-hard cheeses ranging in size from standard 500 g formats to larger blocks weighing over 25 kg can be sealed, while the fully automated system can pack between 10 to 40 cheeses per minute.

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