Farne Salmon and Trout, the Scottish fish processor, has appointed processing and packaging specialists Reiser UK to help it with the thorny problem of vacuum packaging.
Reiser provides packaging solutions for companies specialising in bakery and dairy products, meat and seafood.
Farne acquired a Supervac vacuum packaging machine from Reiser to help it cope with larger packs of its Scottish smoked salmon. Farne's managing director Colin Burke said: "We have had the Supervac in use since late last year. We bought it specifically to cope with large, 400 gram packs of smoked salmon, which are so big they tend to get bends in the middle when packed using any of our existing machines.
"Because of this we were getting what is known in the trade as 'leakers' and they were accounting for in excess of 12 per cent of our production."
The semi-automatic, in-line Supervac has helped resolve the problem, according to Farne. "From more than 12 per cent of leakers we have gone to a position where we cannot measure the lost packs. Basically they are down to zero," said Burke. "For what we bought it to do, the Supervac is absolutely fantastic."
Farne has worked closely with Reiser for some time, and already uses a thermoformer, a Ross sealer, a Dixie Nova slicer and Vemag extruder supplied by Reiser.
Some 70 per cent of Farne's production is dedicated to packaged smoked salmon but recent diversifications mean the company also produces smoked trout as well as value-added and delicatessen products such as mousses and terrines. Around 40 per cent of its output is exported to mainland Europe and the United States.
Reiser's managing director David Roberts said that the company was pleased with the success of the Supervac at Farne's facilities. He said: "Farne looked at the products of a number of our rivals before choosing the Supervac. We knew it could do the job they wanted it for because of its flexibility, its efficiency and speed, as well as its ease of operation."