The highest-performing, most flexible filling solution for both carbonated and still canned drinks. This is the Sacmi ECF, the ‘star’ of a key order for Morocco, a market currently one of the most dynamic and promising in all North Africa.
The Group, which operates in the country through a dedicated branch – Sacmi North Africa – established as part of a joint venture with the leading local bottler, thus continues to develop and grow in Africa: this ongoing success also stems from a solution designed to handle, thanks to the special architecture of the filling valve, both still products (juices, etc.) and fruit-based CSDs (in this case, orange-based) that also contain pulp and fibre.
The supplied monobloc– which includes the seamer that seals the can after filling – has a centre-to-centre of 167 mm and operates with 27 filling valves, downstream from which there are four seaming stations. Extremely flexible, this solution can handle “regular” or “slim” cans in the most popular 250 and 330 ml formats. Thanks to the container handling system – which operates by supporting containers from underneath – and advanced electronic-volumetric filling technology (each valve is equipped with a magnetic dosing unit that controls filling electronically by measuring the volume transferred to the bottle) the system provides maximum precision and high speed, which in the supplied configuration can reach 24,000 cans/hour.
Depending on the drink to be bottled, the system operates at high temperature (hot filling, 85-90°) when filing with fruit juice or at ambient temperature for CSDs. A key feature of the Sacmi ECF is that the filling system does not move the cans upwards towards the filling valve: instead, it is the filling unit that is lowered onto the can, thus ensuring a perfect valve-can system seal and, therefore, maximum process efficiency, giving production waste of less than 0.01%. In the hot filling option the decompression manifold is used to recycle the product and the valve that normally manages low filling speed operates as a recycle valve.
On the cost and maintenance fronts, this particular configuration offers a further dual advantage. On one hand, the fact that it is the filling unit which moves towards the can and not vice versa eliminates any need to install lifting jacks and reduces the number of moving parts, thus minimising maintenance. On the other, the machine is extremely easy to wash thanks to a single ground-mounted tank (outside the turret) that receives the product from the mixing system; dummy bottle insertion is, in order to proceed with washing operations, fully automated.
All structural machine parts are designed to prevent liquid stagnation: more specifically, because of the high acidity of certain drinks and the high temperatures reached in hot filling, all machine parts that come into contact with the product are made of AISI 316L stainless steel. Thanks to these features, then, the Sacmi ECF has proven itself to be the most flexible, efficient solution for both the hot filling of still drinks and ambient temperature filling of CSDs.