It claims that the compact Tetra Rex TR/22 filling machine is particularly suited for operating in new categories such as soy-based drinks or probiotic drinking yoghurt packaging.
Probiotics are an increasingly popular addition to mainstream foods and are set to more than triple in value in Europe to reach $137.9 million (€118.5m) by 2010, according to a recent Frost & Sullivan report.
In addition, probiotic drinking yoghurt has been the fastest growing dairy product in the last five years. Market research by Euromonitor shows that probiotic 'little bottles' have grown by 52 per cent this year, reaching a retail sales value of €28 million, the highest growth in the core European markets.
It would appear that the probiotic trend is being particularly exploited in Sweden, with a number of companies launching organic and bio yoghurts in 2003 and 2004, such as Proviva and Primaliv (by Skånemejerier), Verum (by Norrmejerier).
Soy-based products are also on the increase. After a market growth of well over 10 per cent in 2002 compared to the previous year, soy-based drinks and desserts and meat-free and tofu products again showed double figure growth in 2003, reaching a value of €1.5 billion, according to new data from Prosoy.
Tetra Pak argues that the TT/22 can help manufacturers penetrate these growing markets in a cost-effective way. It claims that the hygiene standard, efficiency and performance of the filling machine are almost at par with larger gable top filling machines, while the compact size of the TR/22 makes it easy to accommodate in small production facilities.
The company also claims that the TR/22 can be used by larger dairy or beverage producers that do not have the filling capacity to introduce to market new products in Tetra Rex cartons.
The TR/22 comes in both standard and extended hygiene (XH) versions, depending on the producer's product needs. The XH version can deliver product shelf life of up to 21 days.
Dairy and beverage producers can also choose between two formats that allow for volume flexibility. The base (70x70 mm carton bottom) carton format can fill volumes between 200ml to 1-litre volumes, and the max (95x95 mm carton bottom) format is for1893ml to 2-litre volumes.
Despite it's compact size - 3.3x1.4 metre footprint and 2.7 metres in height - Tetra Pak claims that the TR/22 has a number of hygiene features that help to protect product integrity from the start to the end of the filling process.
These machine features include a Tetra Pak Operator Panel (TPOP) for automatic touch-screen interface for easier operation; streamlined machine design for smoother and simplified cleaning; quick volume change-over and package volume flexibility and high operating efficiency with a 'no carton no fill' feature that prevents product waste.