ULMA Packaging develops WidthFlex™, a system for variable-width thermoforming machines that minimises film scrap.

Mar 18, 2024

Thermoforming machines are mechanically designed with packaging film drag chains that require a longitudinal cut at the machine's output to reject packaging waste.

In this sense, if the format of the products to be packaged requires a narrower width, consequently, the scrap generated at the machine's output will be greater.

ULMA Packaging has developed a mechanism capable of turning its thermoformers into variable-width equipment.

This means that the concept of conventional thermoforming machines, which required all packaging formats to fit into the same work area, has been replaced by new variable-width thermoforming machines. The new Width-FlexTM system makes it possible to adapt the width and feed to all required formats, thus minimising film waste.

With this system, formats that require a smaller width do not produce any excess waste, as the machine is able to narrow the distance between the drag chains.

In some cases, scrap can be reduced by up to 80% because the feed system is adjusted to the width of the reel required for each format.

The width of the chain guides is adjusted via the operating panel by a precise motorised system that adjusts the chain guide along the entire length of the thermoforming machine.


The Width-FlexTM system provides the perfect solution for customers who require different width formats. 

The benefits are clear: 

  • Less film waste. 
  • Optimised unit cost of packaging. 
  • Avoids oversized reel widths. 
  • Smaller footprint. There is no need to purchase a second thermoforming machine to fit a different width.
  •  Optimised OEE. Improved availability with full format changes in less than 45 minutes. 

This new innovative system, which is aligned with our #ULMAweCare sustainability project, consolidates our position as a leading manufacturer of packaging systems that are environmentally friendly while also improving key aspects of production. 

If you are interested in discussing the benefits of this system, do not hesitate to contact our experts. Click the 'Contact Us' button at the bottom of the page to get in touch.