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Cover Story: Almarai and Syntegon

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Almarai

International Confectionery sits down with baked goods manufacturer Almarai relies on integrated packaging systems from Syntegon.

Who doesn’t like to sweeten their day with muffins, cupcakes, or pastry? Around the globe, bakery products are considered a special treat – and the Middle East is no exception. For bakery manufacturers, however, the popularity of these sweet bites poses its own challenges: muffins, pastries and croissants are very diverse and delicate products that must be handled with care – from distribution to primary packaging.

Almarai founded in 1977, today is ranked as the number one FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Goods) brand and the largest bakery manufacturer in the MENA (the Middle East & North Africa) region. In addition to its high-quality dairy products, Almarai has diversified its product portfolio to include juices, bakery, and poultry under the brand names Almarai, L’usine, 7DAYS, and Alyoum. Meanwhile, the company operates successful joint ventures with Chipita and PepsiCo. 

Maximum flexibility for a broad product range 

For a new production site in Ha’il and the primary site at Alkharj, Almarai needed several flow wrapping machines for primary packaging. “Our choice fell on Syntegon, and we purchased the packaging lines in 2015,” says Mark Farmar, Divisional Manufacturing Manager Bakery at Almarai. On these lines, Almarai packs a wide variety of bakery products such as bread, burger buns, sandwich rolls, puffs, croissants, sandwiches, cupcakes, muffins, swiss rolls, bake rolls, and cake bars, under two brands, L’usine and 7DAYS. 

Almarai was looking for flexible machines that could be easily adapted to different product shapes and textures. “On the one hand, we wanted machines that work quickly, have short downtimes, and can be easily retooled. On the other hand, we process and package unique and delicate products. Syntegon was the right partner for us”, says Farmar. With its Pack-Series flow wrapping machines, Syntegon offered solutions that could be modified to the wide product range in terms of handling, distribution, feeding and packaging – enhancing the production performance even more. 

One of the main strengths of Syntegon’s equipment lines is the modular design that allows for high flexibility to cater to a wide range of product and pack style variations. With this, Syntegon can respond to the manufacturer’s needs and provide a fitting solution, whether that is an entry level system, an efficient high-speed solution or anything in between. 

There is no “one-size-fits-all” solution. Syntegon takes their customers’ products, packaging material and pack style into consideration when choosing the right solution. Industrial baking focuses on offering consumers the same product experience they get when buying from a small bakery around the corner. To make sure the products are packaged as freshly as possible, packaging equipment is usually integrated into the baking and cooling processing lines.  

A major challenge for manufacturers of baked goods is to maintain the quality of packaged products and ensure they look, smell, and taste fresh. So, the handling and packaging equipment needs to handle and process the delicate bakery products accordingly, in order to keep the products crunchy and delicious throughout the whole manufacturing and supply chain. 

Read more of the article here: January/February 2022 Single Issue form – International Bakery (in-bakery.com)

Media contact

Roshini Bains
Editor, International Bakery
Tel: +44 (0) 1622 823 922
Email: editor@in-bakery.com

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