Friday, 30 September 2016

Bosch Packaging Wins the German Packaging Award

Bosch Packaging Wins the German Packaging Award

  The prototype packaging equipment Bosch Sigpack VPF (Vertical Platform for Flat Pouches), the f...

yummex Middle East: Double-digit Growth for the 10th Anniversary

yummex Middle East: Double-digit Growth for the 10...

  The international trade fair for sweets and snacks in the MENA region, yummexMiddle East, which...

UK’s Best New Fish and Chip Shops Announced

UK’s Best New Fish and Chip Shops Announced

 The UK’s top 10 new fish and chip shops have been announced by the 2017 National Fish and Chip Aw...

Syngenta Has a New President Global Seeds and North America

Syngenta Has a New President Global Seeds and North Ame...

 Syngenta has announced the appointment of Jeff Rowe to the new role of President Global Seeds and Nort...

ConAgra Foods Acquires Frontera

ConAgra Foods Acquires Frontera

 ConAgra Foods has announced that it has acquired the packaged foods businesses of Frontera Foods and R...

Three New Appointments for tna’s Asia Pacific Team

Three New Appointments for tna’s Asia Pacific Team

 Food processing and packaging supplier tna has expanded its team in Asia, with the appointments of a n...

Key Technology Launches Website in German

Key Technology Launches Website in German

  Key Technology has announced the launch of its new mobile-friendly website in German to support its ...

Key Technology Introduces VERYX Belt-Fed Digital Sorters to Europe

Key Technology Introduces VERYX Belt-Fed Digital Sorter...

 Key Technology introduces its VERYX belt-fed digital sorters to the European food processing industry ...

Case Study: Ishida Helps Spanish Snack Manufacturer to Grow

Case Study: Ishida Helps Spanish Snack Manufacturer to ...

 Aperitivos y Extrusionados (Apex), now one of Spain’s top three snack food manufacturers, uses Ishida ...

Nigeria Has a New Potato Processing Plant

Nigeria Has a New Po...

 A USD120m potato farm and processing plantis underway in ...

DQ System Launches Potato Skins Snack

DQ System Launches P...

 Dairy Queen brand has unveiled a new line of oven-hot sna...

US Processed 5% Less Potatoes in 2015

US Processed 5% Less...

US potatoes used for processing totaled 280 million cwt, d...

Lay’s Chalet Sauce Potato Chips Available in Canadian Retail

Lay’s Chalet Sauce P...

  Frito-Lay Core Global Brands, PepsiCo Foods Canada, a...

Cambodia Opens First Potato Research Centre

Cambodia Opens First...

 With potato consumption continuing to rise in the Kingdom...

Lebanon Bans Potato Imports

Lebanon Bans Potato ...

Agriculture Minister Akram Chehayeb has announced a decisi...

Purple Magic Potato Running for the Invent Awards

Purple Magic Potato ...

  Purple Magic potato variety is now in the running for t...

Land-Grant Universities Bolster the US Potato Genebank’s Impact

Land-Grant Universit...

 Land-grant universities are collaborating to support the ...

New Variety of Innate Potato Approved

New Variety of Innat...

  The J.R. Simplot Company has completed a voluntary cons...

The Use of Nicotine-based Pesticides Limited in Minnesota

The Use of Nicotine-...

  Seeking to reverse a decline in bees and other pollinat...

TWELVE years ago four engineers in Belgium got together and jotted their ideas down on paper. Their only option for work space was the garage of a house, in Kapelle, Belgium.
And so the story of BEST (Belgian Electronic Sorting Technology) began.

With their years of experience in optical sorting technology, Bert Van der Auwera, Paul Berghmans, Eddy De Reys and Marc Ruyman were convinced there was a need for a new generation of modern and efficient sorting machinery, and they set out to develop a high-tech laser sorter for the removal of unwanted substances from a stream of good product, based on differences in colour and structure.
And, thanks to the improved efficiency and performance they managed to achieve, the four came up with highly reliable and user-friendly equipment to do the job - and so BEST was born.
In a short time, BEST managed to establish a prominent position in the industry and grew to international importance.
And it all came about, partly because someone wanted a sorter that could detect defects in raisins - defects in the sticky fruit that were the same colour.
This lead to the invention of a new generation of sorting technology - the laser sorter LS9000TM designed and manufactured by BEST.
A year later the BEST laser sorter had revolutionised several new markets worldwide and in 1998, the company had to establish bigger and better equipped headquarters plus a network of agents in countries that were using their products.
The year 1998 also saw BEST's directors win the technological innovation award from the King Baudouin Young Entrepreneurs Foundation.
Another award for entrepreneurship came their way in 1999 as the company continued to grow and expand.
The start of the new millennium saw BEST open a branch in Colorado, USA, as their products were now being used in 28 countries. And the headquarters had to move to yet a bigger building in Belgium while the high capacity laser sorter the ARGUSTM was designed.
By taking over the MachineVision group from BARCO in 2003, BEST expanded and strengthened its market share in several countries while at the same time, acquiring some new applications. LED, X Ray, Camera Dual and measuring on belt were added to the stable while Fluo technology for sorting machines was introduced.
Due to the fluorescence features of certain products, the patented laser fluoTM technology gives an even better contrast to detect colour and texture differences. It creates a kind of black and white contrast that results in a very high detection efficiency and very little false reject.
The GeniusTM sorters were introduced in 2005 and modfied again the next year as BEST celebrated its 10th anniversary and the free-fall sorter, the Helius was introduced on to the market.
And growth continues: BEST now has subsidiaries in The Netherlands, two in the US and Hong Kong as well as in Belgium, while its turnover last year was in excess of €50 million (£40m) and its staff had grown to 180 people.
The four directors of BEST have continually invested their profits back into the company with research and development being their priority. At the same time, as staffing needs grew along with an increased demand for their product and their current site at Haasrode in Heverlee, Belgium will have doubled in size by the end of this year.
And it's not stopping here, says director Bert Van der Auwera.
"We have 50 R&D people who are continually finding electronic solutions to sorting problems and, as more applications come to the fore, so we will come up with the technology to suitably meet customer requirements."
Innovation can be found in different domains and all departments of the company, Van der Auwera said.
"R&D is continually searching for and developing new technologies and applications. This is, in fact, the core business of the company. BEST is built on continuous technological innovation."
BEST's laser sorter is an extremely hi-tech product and unique among its kind. Because of the complexity of optical lasers, which have to be able to work with the mechanical separation of good and bad product.
No other manufacturer in the world to date has managed to build a similar machine with the same performance and reliability.
And the search for perfection goes on.
"It is a never-ending struggle to keep up to date in a world where software and hardware developments evolve even faster," comments Van der Auwera.
After the free-fall laser, BEST have developed
dual sorter (camera and laser), FluoTM technology, infra-red lasers, X-Ray detection, the 2000mm wide sorter, biological detection and digital hardware processing systems.
The laser sorter is the perfect combination of optical, electronic, electrical and mechanical ingenuity. This was the beginning and the breakthrough for BEST and today it still represents a large part of the company's turnover.
Belgium is now only five per cent of BEST's market with the rest of Europe accounting for 40 per cent, the United States 30 per cent and the rest of the world 25 per cent.
BEST is better, it would seem.

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