UAE – Global supplier of aseptic packaging technologies, SIG has inaugurated its first technology center in the Middle East and Africa region. 

The technology centre is designed to assist established F&B leaders from the region and back budding entrepreneurs looking at starting up their food and beverage businesses 

It features technologies such as the avant-garde extrusion which SIG says allows faster development and validation of new products and packaging that meet the ever-increasing consumer demand for sustainability. 

With only two similar Technology Centres worldwide in Germany and China, the new SIG complex in Dubai will expand the co-development of products with existing SIG customers and speed up innovation cycles through short-run test fillings. 

The world’s fastest filling machine

Earlier, SIG unveiled SIG NEO, a major innovation in filling technology with a speed of up to 18,000 packs per hour, making it the world’s fastest filling machine for family-size carton packs. 

The new machine is also reported to have a 25% lower carbon footprint per filled pack compared with SIG’s current generation filling machines for family-size packs. 

“Food and beverage producers have tight deadlines and demanding production and profitability goals, as well as sustainability targets to meet,” said Ian Wood, Chief Technology Officer at SIG. 

“To fulfil all their needs, we’ve built a world-class system that’s far more flexible and efficient than any other on the market.” 

The aseptic packaging company also recently entered into an agreement to sell its Whakatāne Mill (WML) in Bay of Plenty, New Zealand to a consortium of investors led by Dr Dermot Smurfit. 

Dr Dermot Smurfit and his other European consortium members have experience in owning and operating paper packaging businesses. 

SIG had in March announced plans to cease mill operations after failing to secure a buyer, but later received an expression of interest from the European consortium of buyers. 

Smurfit Consortium spokesman Ian Halliday said that the consortium looked forward to developing a competitive operation for offering support to customers in New Zealand and worldwide. 

“We believe that the Whakatāne Mill has a very bright future as the only folding box Board Mill in Oceania, and we intend to invest heavily in the Mill to support both our customers and New Zealand’s forest products industry,” Halliday added.  

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