Since 2016, Zalat-o-mat GmbH located in the south of Germany has been operating vending machines for fresh regional products such as vegetables and lettuce from its own farm at several locations. The number of vending machines, called Zalat-o-maten, is growing steadily and the possibility of shopping that is independent of opening times is becoming increasingly popular with end consumers. Due to the increasing production volumes, it was necessary to purchase a KRONEN salad spinner and a packaging solution in order to meet the growing demand.
At 11 locations, customers can purchase various fresh products from the machines around the clock, e.g. seasonal vegetables, ready-to-eat salads and juices as well as food from cooperating regional suppliers. Lisa Zapf, managing director of Zalat-o-mat GmbH, was looking for a solution to efficiently process the lettuce from their own cultivation, which would allow the shortest possible time between harvest and sale. This should ensure that the machines can always be adequately stocked with freshly harvested, washed and packaged lettuce.
The family business has been using a GEWA washing machine for 12 years to wash various products and especially the various salads. The washing machine is now supplemented by a KS-7 PLUS salad and vegetable spin-dryer as well as a KWT 16 weighing table and platform with single-head scale, which is combined with a CP 350 PLUS packaging machine.
Before making the purchase decision, Lisa Zapf did intensive research on the packaging machines available on the market, which had to meet two criteria in particular: a small to medium processing capacity is sufficient for the family business. And particularly important is the production of the most space-saving package sizes for lettuce of 100g, 300g and 500g , since the limited sales area inside the vending machines should be used optimally.
At Fruit Logistica in February 2020, she found what she was looking for at the KRONEN booth and together with Heiko Schönbroich, KRONEN Sales Manager for Southern Germany, the packaging solution was adapted to the specific requirements of space-saving packaging. By purchasing the salad spin-dryer and packaging solution, the processing was optimized so that the approx. 300 kg of lettuce can now be processed efficiently and the promise of freshness can be kept even with increasing sales volumes. In addition, the solution is flexible and can be used for different products such as lettuce, leaf lettuce, spinach or rocket, as well as other vegetables and also other pack sizes for sale to resellers can be produced thanks to the flexible adaptation.
With the KRONEN machines, the family business is now equipped for the thorough and fast processing of the salad products and is well prepared for the commissioning of further vending machines.
More about the production of ready-to-eat salad for vending machines of Zalat-o-mat GmbH