Filling Machines for Craft Distilleries
Craft distillers can now be found in every state across the US, with each offering unique spirits to consumers. While some have become popular not only in their own state but even across the country, others serve more local or regional patrons. At Liquid Packaging Solutions, fillers are manufactured for craft distillers both large and small, to reach a few fans or to supply the country.
Of course, when choosing a filling machine, output should always be a consideration, along with the reliability of the fills and the type of fill used. For smaller craft distillers, LPS offers tabletop liquid fillers that can both increase production as well as provide a consistent fill. In addition, the tabletop machinery, as the name suggests, does not require extensive space for packaging.
Automatic filling machines will increase the output to meet higher production demands, but will also require additional space, for both the machine, the conveyor and typically other packaging equipment, even if only loading and accumulating turntables. While tabletop machines can typically be manufactured with up to six fill heads, automatic machinery can usually fill up to sixteen bottles each cycle.
But what about smaller craft distillers that are working toward and expect growth in the future? While all liquid fillers can be upgraded - for example, a two head tabletop filler can add up to four more heads in the future - there do exist several other methods of planning for future growth. The most popular solution for such a situation involves a semi-automatic filling machine built on the same frame as the automatic filler.
The full frame semi-automatic filling machine will still require operator assistance with each cycle, but will allow for more fill heads. The operator simply slides bottles along a track until they are lined up under the fill heads. From there, either a finger or foot switch is used to activate the fill cycle. Once filled, the operator moves the bottles out of the fill area, likely to a capping or corking station.
However, if product demand increases to the point that manual labor cannot keep up, the machine can be modified, through the addition of a conveyor, PLC and control box, to run automatically without the need to purchase new filling equipment. The design of the liquid filler, in this case, allows the machinery to grow with the company, all the way to automatic bottling of the distilled spirits.
Of course, each distiller has different needs and different goals. LPS will work with individual distillers to find the best filling machine for their own unique project, taking in to account not just the product, bottle, cap and label, but also the desire for growth and the need to plan for that growth.