The Technology Excellence Awards

Your Opinion Matters!

The Technology Excellence Awards will return this September to PACK EXPO Las Vegas and Healthcare Packaging EXPO 2021.  The awards recognize exhibitors’ innovative technology they have developed that has not previously been shown at a PACK EXPO or Healthcare Packaging EXPO.

There was a great response from exhibitors nominating some fantastic and innovative solutions for the awards. We enlisted some of the top professionals in the industry to review the submissions and narrow them down to just three finalists in each category, and the results are in!

Your 2021 Technology Excellence Awards finalists are… 

Baking & Snack


CanReseal® is a revolutionary can end design that adds threading just below the ubiquitous double-seam. This allows a metal closure to be screwed into the top of the can to create an air and liquid tight seal.

Stated simply, CanReseal’s design effectively adds threads to today’s modular assortment of can body sizes and diameter options, turning commercially available beverage cans into resealable, aluminum cups.

CanReseal’s approach to resealability is configurable multiple ways to suit the of the product application and brand requirements. With our CanReseal Ring-End (CRE™) configuration, the whole top of the can is open to allow the most utility for still and carbonated beverages. The familiar Stay-On Tab opening method for cans, universally known to consumers, is also an option to now become resealable with CanReseal (CSOT™).

CanReseal features a design that is compatible with standard can body sizes and types. Manufacturing is the same as conventional cans, plus the closures are made using the same processes as the can lids. A strong advantage is that existing manufacturers can easily convert their production lines, making rapid global scalability possible.

CanReseal offers an economical and fully sustainable, all-metal resealable can that helps reduce our dependency on single-use plastic bottles.



In 2020 Delkor was given an order by a meat/poultry company to design a new generation case packer for thermoformed trays.  Specifically this case packer was linking with the most advanced and high speed thermoform traying equipment on the market.  The high speed Delkor thermoform case packer that we developed runs at 264 trays per minute so it links appropriately with the most advanced thermoforming traying equipment that is upstream from our case packers.   Secondly, this customer required a case packer that could form, load and close the full range of shipper styles required by the U.S. mass merchandisers.  The Delkor case packer can form, load and close the full range of shipper styles (brown box, retail ready and club store trays) with rapid change-over between shipper styles or product sizes and pack patterns.

Also of importance, this customer wanted to have a solution to avoid the movement forward or backward of its thermoformed tray in a retail ready display on a customer's retail shelf.   Delkor developed as part of its new case packer design the capability to modify on the case packer the retail ready shipper to ensure that this customer's product remains position correctly in front of the consumer when on the shelf at the mass merchandiser.

For Pack Expo we will be running this customer's thermoformed tray in our booth and will have video footage from this customer's operation of these new high speed thermoformed case packers in operation.


graphic packaging

Introducing the KeelClip™1600 from Graphic Packaging, a distinctive paperboard clip packaging machine solution for beverage cans that is tailored to our customers’ sustainability agendas. The KeelClip 1600 offers multi-packing of cans with a sustainable paper-based clip that provides an alternative to plastic rings and shrink film. KeelClip provides excellent pack integrity to meet the rigors of distribution and consumer handling, with a top panel for branding and clean can tops and the ability for consumers to remove individual cans leaving the rest of the pack intact.

KeelClip 1600 offers the ultimate solution in product size range, handling multi-diameter cans including standard, slim and sleek cans, and can height flexibility from 3.4” to 7.44”. A wide range of pack formats includes 4, 6, and 8 packs with no-tool repeatable changeovers for reliable operation. An IQ tablet is mounted on the HMI and contains changeover checklists, video guidance, and the technical manual for ease of access by operators and maintenance personnel. And, with speeds up to 400 packs per minute surge, it can produce multipacks at scale.

The KeelClip 1600 is being displayed for the first time at Pack Expo Las Vegas. KeelClip is the proud recipient of numerous awards for innovation, design and packaging, and the KeelClip 1600 multi packing solution is utilized by some of the biggest brands in the industry with machines installed and product in the market in numerous countries in three continents.

graphic packaging

General Packaging

p.e. labellers

P.E. Labellers latest offering, Simpl-Cut ®, is revolutionizing roll-fed labeling. This groundbreaking development solves two major weaknesses inherent in the design of traditional roll-fed labelers and has proven to offer exceptional performance and flexibility.

For decades, manufactures of soft drinks, bottled water, and personal care products faced two main challenges known to significantly affect OEE, including hot-melt adhesive build-up on the cutting drum and utilization of complex cutting blades that lead to intricate, lengthy changeovers. Simpl-Cut’s revolutionary design solved both challenges. It features a single, dual function vacuum drum for label cutting and transfer intended to simplify operations. Glue is applied before the label is cut, allowing the label roll to protect the drum from glue build-up, thus reducing the number of times labelers are cleaned from two per shift to once per day. The second benefit of the single drum design is that cutting is achieved on the vacuum by pulling labels across fixed knives, resulting in elimination of complex cutting blades and decreasing knives changeover time from two hours to two minutes.

Offering greater flexibility, customers can run hot-melt adhesive and pre-glued labels on the same Simpl-Cut machine. In addition, Simpl-Cut drums can be configured with up to five stations per vacuum drum, allowing customers to run new containers outside of the specified size range without sacrificing production speeds or quality.

Adopted by leading manufacturers and bottlers, Simpl-Cut is known for its performance in high-speed applications, achieving more uptime and greater savings.



Beckhoff is unlocking entirely new possibilities in packaging, food & beverage, pharmaceuticals and more with the introduction of XPlanar. In this innovative system for flying motion control, planar movers float freely above planar tiles arranged in customizable layouts and enable extremely flexible, precise and highly dynamic positioning. For machine builders and manufacturers, this results in maximum flexibility and simplification in machine and plant designs.

The XPlanar system combines the individual arrangement of planar tiles with multi-dimensional positioning capability of the planar movers floating above them. The movers enable jerk-free and contact-free motion in two dimensions at up to 4 m/s with 2 g acceleration and 50 μm positioning repeatability – completing movements without any noise or abrasion.

The planar motor system is highly scalable to suit individual machine and plant requirements. Due to the maximum flexibility in mover positioning and very high motion dynamics, it is possible, for example, to divide product flows very simply and individually, so that previously necessary robots or inflexible mechanical devices can be efficiently replaced. The contact-free mover travel also eliminates wear, emissions and carryover contamination from products being transported.

The basis of the XPlanar system is the planar tiles, which measure 240 x 240 mm and can be arranged in any desired geometries that are precisely adapted to the application at hand. The tiles contain all power electronics and support Gigabit communication via EtherCAT G. A freely selectable number of planar movers float above them, made possible by integrated permanent magnets.



Don’t Store! Just Print – A digital warehouse for on-demand manufacturing

How can manufacturers of fast-moving consumer goods rely on full availability of spare and wear parts at no costs for transport and logistics?

Automated packaging of FMCG is facing challenges such as a high number of product and packaging formats, short product life cycles and small batch sizes. Size parts need to be immediately modifiable and replaceable to keep the line running.

Access to a global digital warehouse which contains certified print jobs of all types of spare and wear parts, combined with an on-demand 3D printing, on site at the manufacturer’s plant, is the answer. The value chain of the future.

Schubert Additive Solutions offers on-demand-production of spare and wear parts with 3D print technology. Schubert’s PartBox is a digital parts streaming platform, used for 3D-printing to automate parts production. It holds designs of several parts that may need replacement and enables manufacturers to 3D-print them just by pressing a button, either from their computer or mobile-phone.

A single 3D printer can replace dozens of shelves and boxes while offering 100% availability of spare parts and eliminating costs and risks of waiting times, logistics, transport at a high level of transparency and plannability.


Beverage & Dairy


Hiperbaric In-Bulk technology is a global innovation for the high-volume processing of HPP beverages. This range of equipment is based on a revolutionary concept (patent pending), in which beverages are processed in-bulk prior to bottling.

This new technology reduces steps, simplifying the process and offering the highest HPP operation productivity in the world, along with the lowest processing cost and lowest energy consumption. In addition, it allows the use of any type of container after HPP processing, regardless of material, design, or size. This includes carton brick, carton bottles, glass bottles, bag-in-box, PET bottles, and much more.

The design of this equipment allows to obtain a filling efficiency of 90% of the total volume, approximately double that of in-pack technology. The process begins with liquids filling the inlet tank. After pressurization, the HPP beverage fills the outlet tank through sterilized tubes and is ready to be bottled in an ultra-clean filling line.

Thanks to its great filling ratio, the throughput of the Hiperbaric 525 Bulk model can reach a maximum capacity of +4,000 L/h or 1,300 US gal/h compared to 3,200 L/h or 900 US gal/h delivered by the largest in-pack model, an increase of 30-40% capacity.



Fit for virtually any application, including naked, raw, and packaged food products as well as non-food products, SideDrive’s hygienic spiral conveyors use only side drive, edge-driven technology from Intralox. Not only are they the most hygienic spiral conveyors in the world, but they can be configured in a vast array of layouts—curved, spiral, with turns, multiple inclines and declines, or simply straight—and without any transfers.

Hygienic features of the spiral start with an open, accessible design with a drumless, or cageless, design that ensures easy access to clean quickly and thoroughly. Smooth welds and sanitary design of the frame allow debris and water to wash away easily. Sloped surfaces prevent standing water and eliminate bacterial contamination. Minimal bolted connections that, when required, are welded, blind bore threaded standoffs that eliminate small spaces and grooves traditional fastening systems create. The modular belting, drives, rods and sprockets are made with USDA-compliant plastic to stand up to high-pressure washdown environments and eliminate contamination risks caused by shavings and lubrication that comes with metal belts. Finally, the no-tool wear parts clean in minutes and keep things quick and simple.



ROCKET RACK® is a pre-engineered, factory fabricated sanitary support system for process pipe, electrical conduit, and other mechanical installations. It is specially designed for use in FDA or USDA regulated facilities such as Food & Beverage and Pharmaceutical plants—any project where sanitary installation is required.  Support racks are engineered to withstand heavy loads and the patented slot design allows for lines to be added quickly and easily without cutting or welding. The slot also permits fine adjustments, assuring a perfectly straight pipe or conduit run. Sleek lines, radius corners and a polished finish create an aesthetically pleasing installation while meeting the sanitary requirements of the most stringent applications.

This versatile system available in 304 and 316 stainless steel or aluminum angle or flat stock in a wide range of lengths. It can be wall-mounted, trapeze hung, or used in conjunction with a Post Mount system. Our proprietary, PVC coated threaded rod is also a huge time & money saver.  ROCKET ROD – available in either stainless steel or zinc – features a PVC coating that is entirely sealed, making it clean and smooth with no exposed threads – perfect for food and beverage-grade installations. The installer simply cuts the rod to length, easily strips off the amount of coating to reveal precisely the threads needed, then mounts the rack. No on-site fabrication and welding or threading of mounting stock saves time and substantially reduces the danger of product contamination.




A breakthrough recycle-ready alternative to traditional PVC/foil blister packages used for oral solid medications that involves both a lidding and forming material formulated from the same base polymer, HDPE.  HDPE was Amcor’s material of choice based on its wide availability, position as one of the most recycled plastics, inherent high moisture barrier, and its long history of use in pharmaceutical medication bottles.  However, many challenges needed to be overcome to form an entire package from this material using traditional blister packaging equipment.  Amcor leveraged its extensive expertise in blister technology, material science and advanced polymer film processing to incorporate innovative enhancements to meet the challenge.  The result is a lidding and forming film that, in combination, process well on traditional blister packaging machines providing for pharma grade packages.  AmSky™ blister packs have enhanced moisture barrier that is equal to or better than PVC/foil and most grades of PVdC coated PVC/foil offering robust stability for many oral solid medications.  The lidding is tunable allowing AmSky™ to target a balance between senior friendliness and child resistance.

AmSky™ was developed to meet the growing expectations for sustainability in packaging.  It was formulated to meet the challenging recyclability guidelines around the world.  Preliminary assessments indicate a reduction of over 70% in carbon footprint versus traditional PVC/foil-based blister packages.   Final sustainability assessments and recycling claims are in progress.



CanReseal® is a revolutionary can end design that adds threading just below the ubiquitous double-seam. This allows a child resistant closure to be screwed into the top of the can to create an air and liquid tight seal.

Stated simply, CanReseal’s design effectively adds threads to today’s modular assortment of can body sizes and diameter options, turning commercially available cans into resealable, metal containers.

CanReseal’s approach to resealability is configurable multiple ways to suit the of the product application and brand requirements. With our CanReseal Ring-End (CRE™) configuration, the whole top of the can is open to allow the most utility for cannabis infused beverages, cannabis flower, edibles, infused personal care products and more.

CanReseal may also be configured with the familiar Easy-Open End (CEOE™) or Peel-Off End (CPO™), while still accepting the proprietary airtight and child-resistant, CanReseal closure. CanReseal features a design that is compatible with standard can body sizes and types, providing brands multiple configuration and size options for their packaging.

CanReseal offers an economical, compliant, fully sustainable, resealable can to the ever-growing cannabis market.



The mono-material Flowpack flexible pouch is the ultimate sustainable liquid packaging solution for the personal care and cosmetic marketplace. Zacros has been in the liquid packaging industry for more than 60 years. With our extensive knowledge and experience of liquid flexible packaging, we were able to develop a PE lamination that provides durability and performance for personal care and cosmetic products.

In addition to being fully recyclable, by eliminating the (separate) spout, this Flowpack pouch reduces overall material consumption, resulting in more eco-friendly packaging while maintaining usability.


Voting will take place live starting when the show opens on Monday, September 27 at 9am and goes through noon on Tuesday, September 28 at PACK EXPO Las Vegas and Healthcare Packaging EXPO 2021.  There are three ways to vote – onsite, on the official show mobile app and online. The winner of each category will be announced via a press release on Tuesday at the show.  Be sure to take the time to check out the finalists and the winners in their booths!

We encourage all attendees to take part in the voting process.  This is a great way to have your opinion heard and to drive innovation for the future. 

Thank you to all exhibitors who submitted their cutting edge technologies for the awards, and thank you to our Technology Excellence Awards Panelists for their contribution!

The Technology Excellence Awards Panelists are:

  • Ronald Puvak, Executive Director, Contract Packaging Association
  • Matt Reynolds, Editor, Packaging World
  • Jane Chase, Executive Director, Institute of Packaging Professionals
  • Tim Koers, Packaging Consultant
  • Pat Reynolds, VP Editor Emeritus, Packaging World

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