Some of the best wine makers in the world rely on SIPA to fill and pack their bottles. For people who know SIPA as a leader in PET bottle design and production technologies, that may come as something of a surprise. But for some 13 years now, since parent company Zoppas Industries bought the Berchi Group in 2008, SIPA has specialized in the development, production and delivery of complete bottling and packaging lines for glass bottles as well as PET – and that includes wine bottles.
Famous names that include leading prosecco producer La Marca and Marchesi Antinori – use SIPA equipment to help ensure their wines reach the customer in prime condition. In fact, SIPA has wine-making customers across Europe, North and South America, Asia, South Africa, and Australia.
SIPA can design and test PET bottles for wine
PET bottles for wine are increasing in popularity especially in some countries/regions and for some reasons related to safety (special events, in airplanes, etc). They can indeed offer other advantages beside infrangibility: they are lighter compared to glass ones (think of transportation), they can be resealable and produce less CO2 during they production and recyclable.
Along the years, SIPA designers made efforts to design bottles with glass like appearance and classic wine bottle shapes: Burgundy, Bordeaux, Riesling and Champagne shape. SIPA’s laboratory made several tests with PET barrier additives as all wines, reds and whites, are sensitive to oxygen and light which can produce several chemical reactions causing alteration of taste and color. Barrier additives are also added in order to guarantee a good enough barrier for at least 12-24 months of shelf-life.
All SIPA’s systems for the production of containers are basically suitable for the production of PET bottles for wine: for small to medium production outputs with blended PET bottles a single stage ECS SP can be used. For larger size bottles, multilayer and blended preforms the best option is linear blowmolder SFL EVO. When the need is for higher outputs, XTRA rotary blowing system is the choice.
Multiple choice in depalletizing
SIPA offers different types of depalletizer, for example, starting with the Genius DS fully automatic steady-pallet unit, running at 180 layers per hour, through to the Genius DC/A fully automatic moving-pallet unit, running at 300 layers per hour.
Making and filling cartons
When it comes to cartoning solutions, SIPA is possibly the only supplier in a position to satisfy all customer requirements. In the Formex range of carton erectors, different models run at rates of up to 50 cartons per minute. For putting bottles in the cartons, SIPA offers the Jolly single-head and Silent multi-head conventional case packers, typically used for American-type cartons; depending on the version, these operate at up to 3800 cycles per hour.
For customers wanting more specialized packing solutions, four- or six-axis Robby Pack robotic systems provide very high levels of customization; with its anthropomorphic gripping heads, the robot can carton flat-wise bottles, crosswise or upside-down way, with or without the partitions insertion device. Robby Pack can handle complex manipulations, whatever the size of the bottle size, whatever the production output – all the way up to 40,000 bottles per hour.
Innovation in partitions
Uniwrap, meanwhile, is a packer for wrap-around cartons, available with or without partitions inserter. Uniwrap, with its modular design, can handle a wide range of sizes and speeds, from 25 to 55 cases per minute.
Uniwrap allows rapid format changes, without requiring tools or additional equipment. This technology can be integrated with a supplementary device, perfectly integrated with the machine, that makes Uniwrap the first system in the world to feature a pre-fitted stretched honeycomb cardboard inserter. This has numerous advantages, not the least being that honeycomb partitions can cost 30% less than corrugated cardboard.
Glue or tape
When cartons need sealing, SIPA provides options here too: systems that work with hot-melt adhesives to seal upper and lower flaps and handle the fastest lines running at up to 2500 cartons per hour; and also systems using adhesive tape for speeds of up to 1200 cartons per hour.
Putting packs on pallets
Palletizing solutions from SIPA include the conventional Genius PTF steady-pallet unit and the Robby PAL robotic palletizer. Genius PTF uses low-level feeding and includes a halving platform for layer transferring. Plus, it incorporates an innovative row preparation system (Active layer) designed to optimize medium- and low-speed palletization plants. It is composed of a clamp-type head (patented by SIPA) installed on linear axes, that can handle up to six packs at the same time and guaranteeing very fast, accurate and soft pack rotation. Robby PAL is very flexible handling several type of container and serve multiple lines at the same time, it easily adapts to extremely reduced footprint areas. SIPA offers numerous options for the gripping heads.
Wrapping and decanting options
For pallet stretch-wrapping, once again, SIPA provides several options: the SPM rotating-platform type, which can wrap up to 40 pallets per hour; the SPF rotating-arm type (70 pph), and the SPF/A rotary ring type.
Finally, the decanting system in case there’s the need to store wine bottles in the cellar for aging, and then put them back in line for the final packaging before shipping to the market. Solutions can be customized to crate into and decrate from special metal or wooden crates. SIPA systems can handle all sorts of bottle configurations, with bottles laid horizontally or vertically, with output speeds from 2000 to 24,000 bottles/hour.
It goes almost without saying that SIPA supplies not only individual elements of a wine bottling and packaging line, but also complete integrated lines, designed and built to individual customer requirements. If and when there is a need in such lines to incorporated equipment built by third parties, SIPA’s engineering and quality departments are engaged in ongoing market scouting to discover the best and most advanced application technologies, qualification of suppliers in terms of business characteristics and technical solutions, and the creation of long-term partnerships for provision of the most-required equipment.