Whether in an industrial setting, a restaurant kitchen or in a residential property, a Vacuum Packaging Machine would be considered a vital piece of equipment for anyone who uses it regularly.
But what is a vacuum packaging machine and why does it become such an essential for so many industries and individuals?
While it hardly sounds like the most enticing of appliances, its function is so fantastically useful that it often becomes a prized possession to its owners.
Simply put, a Vacuum Packaging Machine is an automatic machine that has the ability to package a material and completely remove the air surrounding that material, before sealing the package.
Professional kitchens will use a vacuum packing machine during food preparation, generally during sous-vide preparation. This is a method of cooking in which food is placed and sealed inside a vacuum-sealed bag before being placed in a water bath at a regulated temperature. This French style of cooking is intended to ensure that the food is cooked evenly whilst also retaining the natural moisture of the ingredients. Nowadays, most commercial kitchens will have a vacuum packing machine specifically for this purpose.
Industrially, vacuum packaging machines will be used to seal food, clothing or other materials in air-tight packaging. Industrial versions of the equipment will tend to be larger in size than ones used in a commercial kitchen, as they will be tasked to seal a larger quantity of items in a faster time period.
Vacuum packaging machines are also used residentially to seal food for freshness and a longer shelf-life. Usually, food sealed in a vacuum packed bag will last twice as long as food open to the natural elements.
There are a variety of different vacuum packaging machines available, all with differing functions to suit a range of needs.
A thermoforming vacuum packaging machine is usually used in an industrial setting due to its size and fast production. Simply, a thermoforming vacuum packaging machine uses rolls of packaging film to seal products that have been pre-loaded into thermoformed pockets. These machines are handy in that they are relatively customizable; they can be altered to change the colour, clarity and size of the packaging, making it the perfect machine for the industrial food industry.
An automatic belt vacuum chamber machine is also used frequently in an industrial setting, again because of its speed of production. Automatic belt vacuum chamber machines require slightly more manual work but are still just as efficient. After the entire product is placed in packaging, the automatic belt vacuum chamber machine will push the package along a conveyor belt and into a chamber, where all the air is removed. Then, the machine will seal the bag before adding more pressure from incoming air, which further ensures that the product is vacuum sealed in the bag. Automatic belt vacuum chamber machines are the equipment of choice for larger packaging tasks because of their sturdiness and ability to deal with weight bearing packages.
Single vacuum chamber machines works in a similar fashion to the aforementioned automatic belt vacuum chamber machine in that the entire product needs to be placed in packaging before entering the machine. Once inside the chamber, the air is removed from the package and it is heat sealed. These machines are ideal for low volume packaging as it does not have the automatic capabilities of its industrial counterparts.
Double vacuum chamber machines work in a similar fashion as a single vacuum chamber machines. The product is placed in a bag and placed in the chamber before air is removed and the package is heat sealed. However, double vacuum chamber machines can produce double the packages that the single vacuum machine can, because of its dual chamber function. It also has fully automatic lids, so that when the process is done, it is immediately ready to repeat the process.
Residentially, the aforementioned machines are simply too large and expensive. All home safe vacuum packaging machines are lightweight and can usually fit onto a table top. These vacuum packaging machines allow you to quickly and easily seal foods at home. However, most machines suitable for residential use are sealers only, meaning that you will be required to place the food items in a bag. The machine will then remove the air and seal the package ready for storage.