It doesn't get much more mom-and-pop than Fisher Horseradish & Mustard, run by Gideon Fisher Sr. He heads the 20 year old family business on his property in Newburg, PA, where his wife operates a semi-automatic filler. He operates a new portable induction sealer, a Compak™ Jr. from Enercon.
The 7''x12''x15'' sealer weighs just 14 lbs. and features a hand-held sealing head. Fisher received assistance from Enercon's regional representative, Charlie Caruso of C/View Packaging, who traveled to the rural locale.
Fisher uses the Compak™ Jr to seal a 38mm flip-top closure with foil-laminate liner on 12-oz squeezable PET bottles of Hempzelsbrand horseradish mustard. He says it takes just 1.6 preset seconds to seal each jar. "It's easy to use," he points out. He double-checks the seals later and recaps them manually.
Fisher also does his own engineering. He connected the sealer to run off a generator that is connected to a car battery - exactly the self-reliance one expects from the Amish. To date, he has used it for one production run of about 4,000 bottles.
Fisher's justification to invest in an induction sealer was product quality. "I would have lost the horseradish business if I had not done something," he tells Packaging World. The pressure-sensitive seals he had been using weren't holding, resulting in leaky seals and dried product. "I get good seals with this," Fisher emphasizes.
Soon, he expects to use the sealer again, this time on 12-oz squat jars of mustard dip, which require a different ring insert on the hand-held sealing head that is easily changed. And he's already concocting a way to run the sealing head using the air-cylinder off the filler.
Parts of this article originally appeared in Packaging World January 2004
Appeared in: eNews: Induction Sealing Technology 1st Quarter 2004