The installation of Ishida multihead weighers at Vaasan & Vaasan, one of Finland's leading bakers, is said to have doubled production capacity and reduced giveaway to almost zero.
As Vaasan & Vaasan sought to extend its customer base to other bakeries, wholesalers, caterers and directly to consumers, the management was keen to find a fast and effective method to enhance accuracy, productivity and efficiency to meet increased demand.
Frozen bake-off products have been rapidly growing in popularity across Europe over recent years. As a result, Vaasan & Vaasan realised it needed to adapt manufacturing processes to scale-up production.
Following extensive research and evaluation of different counting methods and suppliers, Vaasan & Vaasan installed the Ishida multihead weigher to take advantage of the speeds of its new bagmaker. The weigher's ability to count quickly and precisely, combined with specialist training provided by Ishida, has ensured what the Finnish company called a smooth integration into it's production and packing processes.
Juha Eronen, technical manager at Vaasan & Vaasan in Joutseno, commented:"As demand for our bake-off products increased, we soon realised that our old labour-intensive system was not equipped to provide the capacity needed. Also, as our customer base changed, cartons were no longer an appropriate form of packaging, so we looked for more efficient alternatives.
"Ishida's multihead weighing system has allowed us to step up weighing speeds in line with the bagmaking capacity and benefit from new economies of scale. Our daily output has increased from around 22 to 45 tonnes per day. More astonishingly, the weighing process is 99.7 per cent accurate, reducing wastage to near zero, compared with a giveaway of 15 per cent using our old system. We are delighted with the results."
Since the installation of the first Ishida multihead weigher, Vaasan & Vaasan noted significant savings in manpower and product giveaway as well as improvements in customer satisfaction. This led the company to purchase another multihead weigher from Ishida and Vaasan & Vaasan now operates five production lines and two packing stations for its bake-off products.
Vaasan & Vaasan is one of Finland's leading bakers, with net sales in 2002 of around €260 million. Sales and the profitability of bake-off products have contributed to recent improvements in the company's financial results. Vaasan & Vaasan recently announced the purchase of a majority holding in its Swedish associated company Delice Scandinavica. The move is part of a keen internationalisation strategy.
Ishida Europe is a world leader in the design, manufacture and installation of complete weighing and packing line solutions for the food industry. The company develops advanced automated systems for weighing, packing, labelling and handling food products. Headquartered in Birmingham, UK, supported by four additional offices in mainland Europe, one in the UAE and one in South Africa, Ishida Europe's 2002 sales reached £41 million (€28.8m) in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. Ishida Europe is a subsidiary of Ishida in Japan.