Sidel, the leading provider of production equipment and services for liquids in PET, has collaborated with Algar Agro to produce the world’s lightest 900ml PET bottle for edible oil. A large player in the Brazilian market, Algar Agro worked with Sidel to reduce the total weight of its finished bottle from 18 to 14 grams – a reduction of 22%.
The bottle was redesigned without any obvious changes to the customer in its well-established external appearance. However, by using the lightweighting expertise of Sidel, Algar Agro was able to achieve the significant saving in weight and in raw material used. It also has a substantial impact in minimising the cost to produce, package and transport the finished product, along with lowering the total cost of ownership (TCO) of the production equipment itself.
Proposals for the bottle’s packaging optimisation were put together by Sidel, who also carried out feasibility tests for the new design at its Packaging & Tooling Centre in Guadalajara, Mexico. Sidel was chosen over the competition because of its experience and expertise, as well as the actual proposals presented to Algar Agro during initial discussions to lightweight the bottle. Edney Valente Lima Filho, a Project Manager with Algar Agro, explained: “We put together the best industry suppliers and this is reflected in the project results. The success of Sidel was assured by the know-how demonstrated during the negotiation to propose and ensure the new bottle for vegetable oil – the lightest in the world!”
With the acquisition of two Sidel Matrix™ blowers – one at each of its production plants – Algar Agro believes it is the first oil producer in Brazil with integrated injection and blowing in its PET production process. The Sidel machines were installed in bottling lines producing 25,000 PET bottles of vegetable oil per hour. The installation followed a two year investigation and feasibility study into the integration process for the production and packaging of vegetable oils.
Modular blowing brings significant benefits
The Sidel Matrix blower is a modular blow moulding system that delivers very fast changeover times, lower environmental footprint, higher oven efficiency, and greater uptime, all contributing to a lower TCO. With up to 200 possible configurations, it offers quality and consistency across all of them giving producers the flexibility to pick a size and shape that best fits their needs. Three sizes of blowing stations make it possible to produce an almost limitless variety of distinctive bottle shapes for single-serve (up to 750ml), multi-serve (up to 2 litres) or extended bottles family (up to 3.5 litres). The machine is equipped with electrical stretching for better control of material distribution and the embedded machine intelligence increases self-monitoring and automation of processes to achieve safe packaging. Specially designed to reduce scrap, the Sidel Matrix blower can also automatically detect and eliminate bottle process deviations.
Sidel currently operates seven Packaging & Tooling Centres around the world: two in China and one each in France, India, Brazil, the USA and the one in Guadalajara. The facility in Mexico’s second largest city demonstrates the company’s focus on transferring its global knowledge to producers at a local level and, in doing so, helping to meet the growing demand in this market. From bottle design to line engineering and complete life cycle management, producers need optimised solutions and service with greater flexibility, reactivity, interaction and increased cooperation.
Oil products produced from two sites
Algar Agro is a privately-held company producing, processing and marketing soybean and its derivative products. The company’s food product lines include soybean oil, as well as olive oil, composite oil, tomato extract and sauce, some produced in partnership with other companies. It supplies both the domestic and external markets. The company’s crushing, refining and packaging activities for the soybean oil, are concentrated in two advanced industrial complexes located in Uberlândia, in the Triângulo Mineiro region of Brazil, and Porto Franco, in the south of the State of Maranhão.