Manor Bakeries, the UK-based company which makes the Mr Kipling cake range, has purchased six ALX 720 print and apply labelling systems from Advanced Labelling Systems.
The new systems, which are being employed at Manor Bakeries' Carlton site in Barnsley, feature a front-of-pack applicator that can be easily adjusted to apply labels to the side of the packaging.
Used on the company's cake production lines, the ALX 720s apply barcode labels containing information relating to the country of origin, company name and product, to secondary packaging. The ALX 720s will also play an important role in Manor Bakeries' manufacturing programme which is designed to ensure the continued success of its production plants.
"We ordered one ALX 720 for each of our existing production lines and hope to order another four as we roll out the facility to other production lines," said Mike Timlin, industrial engineer at Manor Bakeries' Carlton site. "Prior to ordering the ALX 720s, we were using desk top printers with an applicator added on. They just weren't flexible enough to cope with the changes taking place in the industry.
"The ALX 720 guarantees our operation is 'future-proof'. Unlike the old desk top, the ALX 720 is designed for inline production now and in the future. We cannot operate now without barcodes and over the next few years barcodes will become even more sophisticated. We are now in a position to respond to that."
The Carlton site uses a LogiNet-based production control system into which the ALX 720s can be easily integrated; allowing the label design and format to be prepared on a secure host PC. Operators then use a mini-processor to call the label down to the production line, where details such as the sell-by date and production date are inputted.
Timlin said he expected the ALX 720 to allow for barcodes including a far greater amount of information to be printed and applied automatically in order to further improve efficiency levels and increase productivity.