Product Details Supplier Info More products

The biggest challenge to your quality assurance is the hidden defect or contaminant lying within your product packaging or maybe deep within the product itself, says Mettler Toldeo.

To ensure outstanding product safety and quality, there is only one way to see beyond the obvious: X-ray inspection.

X-ray inspection is not new technology, but it is developing fast.

The food industry was an early adopter because it saw the value of ensuring product safety and quality by catching dense contaminants such as glass, mineral stone, metal, bone, high-density plastics and rubbers, before products leave the factory.

However, modern X-ray inspection systems can do much more than contamination detection.

They can spot the hidden product defects that are not so much dangerous, as disappointing.

This could be the missing or broken biscuits in a box, the underweight portion of rice in a ready-meal, the faulty seal in a yoghurt or the amount of doughnuts in a bag.

X-ray inspection is a tool for the toughest commercial challenge of all: producing perfect foods every time.

Nowadays, it’s not enough to say that you take quality control seriously; you have to prove it.

X-ray inspection helps you to comply with national and international legislative and regulatory standards such as Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP) and the Global Food Safety Initiative, as well as standards set by retailers.

You know what your product should look like when a customer purchases it, but you can’t possibly know what it actually looks like – not on a production line running at, say, 1,200 items a minute or 10 tonnes of bulk products an hour.

X-ray inspection sees what you can’t see.

When you set the standard of presentation, your X-ray inspection unit monitors it relentlessly.

For example, if you specify how much garlic butter should go in each slice of a garlic baguette, it checks every slice.

If you place a toy in a cereal box, it makes sure it’s there.

If you want every beef burger to be perfectly circular, it finds the misshapen ones.

The use of X-ray inspection systems for quality control is virtually limitless.

They can keep your products free from contaminants and simultaneously monitor several quality-control issues.

At Kraft, for example, they know that every box of Marabou Noblesse chocolates is perfect.

Their software checks that each compartment of the tray is full, that no chocolates are broken or misaligned, and that the integrity of the tray seal has not been compromised.

At Finnish potato manufacturer Chips Ab, they use X-ray inspection to catch contaminants and flavouring lumps in individual bags that have already been cased ready to leave the factory.

The good news is that quality-control improvements do not come at the cost of manufacturing speed.

At Zhangzhou Gang Chang Can Food Company in China, for example, the X-ray system monitors the output of four labelling machines with a combined line speed of up to 600 glass jars a minute.

View full profile