Habasit brews up tea bag solution

Everyone loves ‘a nice cup of tea’ – it’s a great British institution. So when the packaging of tea bags was interrupted on a tea manufacturer’s production line, Habasit quickly came to the rescue.

The customer’s application problem was at a point on a processing conveyor where 440 tea bags are inserted into packets and the packets are fed into boxes for distribution. The packets have a shiny, glossy finish and were slipping on a retractable and extendable inclined conveyor.

“The existing belt (not supplied by Habasit) being used by the customer was a longitudinal type grooved material made of PVC plastic,” explains Chris Baillie, Habasit Regional Sales Manager. “Approximately 1,300 packets of tea bags per hour are processed on this belt in a 16-hour day! Over time, the belt’s grooves were filling with dust which in turn was causing the packets to slip as they progressed up the inclined conveyor, resulting in product misalignment and production jams. The consequence of this being that the customer had to clean the belt three to four times per shift in order to keep production running.”

Via our leading range of Fabric, Plastic and Monolithic belting solutions, Habasit are well positioned to serve all manners of conveying applications. Accordingly Chris proposed replacing the existing belt with a Habasit silicone top-coated belt with a super adhesive finish which provides full contact with packets.

“Initially, there were a few issues with dust. However, the time required to clean the newly installed Habasit belt has significantly reduced the customer’s production downtime and cleaning is now only necessary every other shift,” adds Chris. “The conversion to using Habasit belting technology has been a great success and the customer is now running their conveying machine at full capacity.”

The Habasit food belt now used by this tea manufacturer is popular in many industry segments, including biscuits and crackers, chocolate, frozen food, poultry and fruit and vegetables.

As well as its excellent adhesive qualities, the advantages of silicone are that it is resistant to many chemicals, greases and oils and can withstand higher temperatures.

Silicone conveyor belts consist of layers of silicone on top of polyester fabric. They also feature good release properties for very sticky foodstuffs such as caramel or nougat. Products do not stick to these belts. Inclined conveyors using silicone type belting technology can also effectively and efficiently transport sticky substances that have been chilled.

Habasit belts deliver outstanding performance and a superior service life, as well as full compliance with EU and Food & Drug Administration regulations. (LC)

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