2020’s Foodex is set to unveil its most impressive exhibitor line up yet, boasting over 60 brand new launches. Visitors to the UK's premier trade event for food and drink manufacturing, processing, packaging and logistics, will leave thoroughly inspired with a refreshed view of the sector’s technology, automation and sustainability prowess.  

Ahead of the show’s March dateline (30th- 1st April 2020 NEC, Birmingham) here’s just a taster of the innovative thinking set to be on display.

Competition for bakery items out-of-home is stiff and with consumers prone to eating with their eyes, an attractive offering has never been more essential to win the consumer pound. Helping bakery operators achieve just this, MONO Equipment (Stand P170), the longest established manufacturer and supplier of bakery equipment in the UK, is launching its new confectionery depositor range featuring 1, 2 and 3 colour depositing along with highly sophisticated 3D-X multi directional movement control. The technology used in these machines will provide almost unlimited product design possibilities which will delight even the most creative pâtissier.

With the growth of alternative diets showing no sign of slowing, Viscofan UK Ltd (Stand U250) is helping retailers and operators cater to this significant consumer demand with its new Viscofan Veggie casing. An extraordinary plant-based design, specially developed for use in vegetarian, vegan, flexitarian and meat-alternative recipes. The 100% vegetal casing is suitable for fresh and cooked applications, with great frying properties and a super-tender bite allowing users to present a traditionally encased product that adds structure, bite and superior visual presentation to the final product.

Guaranteeing food safety, zero food contamination, waste reduction, no product recalls and a long service life, Chiorino DET™ is a full range of food grade metal detectable belts from Chiorino UK Ltd (Stand G239). The exclusive DET™ TPU belt is recognised in very small particles by the metal detectors used in food processing and packaging. ‘Safest food production’ is top of this exhibitor’s agenda.

The introduction of Natasha’s Law in 2019 has meant operators have a requirement to revisit product labelling and ensure compliance. The FreshMarx 9417+ by Avery Dennison (Stand Q288) is, says its maker, a benchmark in food safety and nutritional labelling. It produces legible, detailed labels that comply with food safety standards, and includes pre-loaded data - including seven standard nutrition label formats and specific labels for Europe - and eliminates mistakes in calculating food expiration dates.

Another time-saving innovation set to help operators increase business efficiency is the revolutionary VFFS bag maker from PFM (Stand K260). The Azimuth Evo offers reduced downtime for reel changes, automatic film web tracking all in a space-saving footprint. Automated film reel set-up eliminates one of the most difficult and time-consuming tasks for operators, cutting changeover time substantially.

Automation is also at the heart of exhibitor Grote’s new launch. Grote, an industrial food slicing and assembly equipment manufacturer, is now offering its industry-leading sandwich assembly line with robotic solutions. The new solutions further automate high volume, low value manual tasks – increasing throughput and quality for sandwich producers. Visit stand Q241 to see Grote’s running sandwich assembly line, complete with 3D vision and robot sandwich lidder.

Hygienic storage is top priority for Dolav (Stand R261) as it introduces its new Ace 460; a hygienic design, shallow pallet box that can hold 445 litres and allows for easy manual product handling. Ideal for holding softer or delicate loose products such as tomatoes or chicken portions, the Ace 460 like Dolav’s Ace 1000, can have a detectable plastic option to enable detection by x-ray and standard scanners.

The theme of hygiene continues over on the Pure Hold stand (Stand P290). The PureAir air purification unit utilises a unique combination of five hygiene technologies, including Ultraviolet, Photocatalytic Oxidation and Targeted Ozone to eliminate unpleasant odours and control harmful bacteria 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year. These units are, says Pure Hold, far superior to any other air purification system on the market and are suitable for use in areas of continuous occupation.

Whilst purified air is a desire for working environments, in packaged products, it’s quite the contrary. Kubepac’s (Stand M293) market leading oxygen absorber range is expanding with the launch of O-BUSTER FT-type. Fast working, the product renders less than 0.1% oxygen in 24 hours and extends length of shelf life by 3 times. The packing film and ingredients are free of microorganisms, heavy metals and toxic substances which are safe for food contact. The innovation is adequate to foods containing water < 40% including pastry, supplements, seasoning, agricultural products, medical articles, feeds, noodles and snacks.

To see more of what’s on offer at Foodex 2020 and plan ahead, visitors can go to: www.foodex.co.uk, and select the ‘Innovation@’ product category, which aggregates every new launch at the show.