• PKN Publisher Lindy Hughson speaks to Geoff Burke of LINCO about the new Espera Nova.
    PKN Publisher Lindy Hughson speaks to Geoff Burke of LINCO about the new Espera Nova.
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Linco introduced the Espera Nova series of Industry 4.0-compatible weigh price labellers at AUSPACK, which includes popular features from previous Espera machines such as automatic product guidance, automatic printer positioning, tool free conveyor and belt release, and fast label roll changes.

It also adds a number of new features that link it up with the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) using Espera’s Think4Industry platform, and provide quality-of-life improvements for the user, said Linco’s Geoff Bourke.

“It will have things such as emailing and messaging capabilities to tell us if there’s something wrong with the machine and it needs attention, preventative maintenance programs to tell us what to do and when,” he said. “We’ll also soon see predictive maintenance capabilities – it will start to learn itself and use the IoT to tell you what's going to happen in the future.”

In a demonstration for PKN publisher Lindy Hughson, Bourke showed off how the Nova could apply labels to sloped surfaces using a 3D camera system for package geometry recognition of natural products.

“That can be applied for meat products in skin trays, whole chickens, and things like that. It allows us to optimise where we label,” he said.

Other features include a 21-inch touch screen that can swipe between start, production, and status screens; an on-board label designer and barcode creator with WYSIWYG display; a built-in preventative maintenance assistant; and full online capabilities, including database connectivity and the ability to control remotely via a smartphone or tablet.

“People really like the 3D imaging, and a lot of our customers are quite excited to get upgraded to a new system versus their well-established existing systems – but they won’t do it unless there are good new features in there, and they’re happy with these ones,” said Bourke. “We think it’s going to be a great success.”

The Espera Nova series is going through the approval process for release in Australia in the middle of this year.

Watch the full interview in our video below.

Food & Drink Business

It was a full house at Melbourne’s Arts Centre for the annual Food & Drink Business + PKN LIVE breakfast forum, where guests, speakers and an industry panel shared methods, insights and discussions on what it means to be a brave brand.

Kellogg’s Australia has announced a partnership with B2B marketplace Yume, to help reduce food waste from its manufacturing processes. It is the first Australian manufacturer to do so.

Media reports from Singapore claim its government will introduce health warnings on packaging and ban advertising for sugary drinks across all media platforms, including online and social media.