All-Seeing X-RAY Enhances Quality Assurance

The extensive detection capabilities of Ishida’s IX-GA 2475 X-ray inspection system are helping to ensure high quality and extended shelf life of a range of delicatessen products from one of Belgium’s leading poultry processors.

Volys Star produces a variety of chicken and turkey products for the retail, wholesale and foodservice markets. Its charcuterie range of sliced meats, supplied to many leading retailers throughout Europe and beyond, are packed in MAP (modified atmosphere packaging) or skinpack trays and then subjected to High Pressure Pasteurisation (HPP), where the sealed trays are immersed in cold water under high isostatic pressure. This gives the packed meats an extended shelf life of up to three months.

For this reason, it is essential that the integrity of each pack is assured before the HPP process, where any defect in the seal will cause the packs to open. The Ishida X-ray is able to spot product in the seal area and at the same time can also detect any unwanted foreign bodies, in particular small metal parts. The Ishida system features two separate rejects bins, one for foreign bodies and another for seal defects.

Volys Star says the versatility of the Ishida X-ray system makes it a valuable addition to its quality control procedures.

“Clearly to find foreign bodies in the packs is essential, but being able to identify faulty seals before the pasteurisation process is a significant extra benefit, particularly in minimising product waste,” explains the company’s operations manager Filip Bonné.

“In terms of alternative technologies, camera systems do not have the ability to see through the packaging. The Ishida X-ray is able to combine these two vital quality checks and, significantly, the capability to identify product in seals is something that some other X-ray systems were unable to do.”
One of the advantages of the Ishida IX-GA 2475 is its unique GA (Genetic Algorithm) technology, which enables the system to be ‘trained’ in the most common types of quality issues that it is looking for, further increasing its detection capabilities.

At Volys Star, the IX-GA 2475 checks two different pack sizes, in weights from 80g to 185g, operating well within its capabilities at speeds of around 48 packs per minute. The machine is in use up to 20 hours a day, five days a week.

“The Ishida is very easy to operate, with fast set up and product changeovers, and has proved extremely reliable,” confirms Filip.

“The safety and quality standards of the major retailers are constantly increasing,” he continues. “With the extensive inspection capabilities of the Ishida IX-GA-4075 we are well placed to deal with both existing and any future requirements. We are very satisfied with the investment we have made.”