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One of the UK’s most famous confectionery suppliers

5 1/2

hours extra production per week

16%

reduction in packaging costs

53%

reduction in polythene consumption

41

less reel changes per week

The Situation.

On arrival we were told that the pallet wrapper and top sheet applicator were a pinch-point for their operation and that in very busy times this was a limiting factor to their production output. Due to the fact they moved in to an old building in the 1920’s and have now outgrown it, they were looking for any solutions that could either free up space or improve throughput.

The Challenge.

Our customer runs a 24hr operation, 7 days a week, 364 days a year. The machinery was running flat out in terms of its capacity in terms of pallets per hour when we arrived. We had to be creative in terms of how to free up capacity during their busiest times. 

The Process.

We established that using their current pallet top sheet material and stretch film, meant they were having to stop the machine 86 times per week (4514 times per year) to change either the reels of top sheets or reels of stretch film. This took between 5–10 minutes depending on whether the operator was prepared for the stoppage or whether it was the stretch film or top sheet. If using 7 and a half minutes as an average stoppage time then this would lead to 11hrs a week in dead time where pallets are not flowing through the machine.  

Both films were at their maximum diameter for the machine so we couldn’t simply add more meters to each roll, so we came up with some special blends that could do the same job of protecting the pallet but at a much lower thickness so the yield per roll would increase.

The Result.

We ended up providing a combined solution that reduced the number of reel changes per week to 45, by using modern blends of polythene for the top sheets and our unique machine pallet wrap. We reduced their polythene packaging consumption by 58% and their overall costs by 16% but most importantly gave them 11 extra hours of extra production output per week where the pallets were able to flow through the machine.