Petrow Food Group invests in $5.7m laser scanning technology for quicker throughput
The company, which supplies specialized ingredients to the food industry, has invested approximately £350,000 ($502,000) in two machines at its 80,000 sq. ft. factory and warehouse in Haverhill, Suffolk.
Niverplast case sealing machine
The machinery includes a TOMRA laser scanner and Niverplast case erecting, case lining and case sealing machine.
Ian Tatchell, managing director, Petrow Food Group, told ConfectioneryNews, the Haverhill site has increased production capacity to support growth within its ingredient product and contract packing business recently.
It also wanted to maximise food safety, reduce the risk of contamination and improve supply chain efficiencies with the investment.
The TOMRA laser scanner was installed mid-2015 and has a front and rear laser scanner to clean unwanted shells and foreign bodies from food ingredients before processing.
It can also sort ingredients to customer’s colour grading specifications.
“The laser scanner capability ramps up the safety of food ingredients and brings a new level of quality assurance,” said Tatchell.
“The machine scans ingredients such as nuts and seeds to remove any objects including stones, shells and other impurities significantly reducing the risk of contamination.”
Fills & seals standard 12.5 kilo boxes
The Niverplast case erecting, case lining and case sealing machine has been custom made with additional capabilities including automated weighing system, metal detection and labelling.
It fills and seals all products in standard 12.5 kilo boxes, or bespoke sizes, ready for distribution.
“We have invested in technology that generates quicker throughput. The automated system streamlines the packaging process and creates cost and operational efficiencies,” added Tatchell.
“Petrow Food Group can now offer the complete package of both the trading and processing of nuts, seeds, coconuts, dates and dried fruit. We supply to a broad range of customers from global blue chip food manufacturers to producers of artisan products.”
The 7.2 acre Haverhill site purchased in 2014 by the Petrow Food Group was previously purpose built for a food ingredients company and became operational in 2015, which coincided with a complete rebranding of the company.
Since then, the company has significantly upgraded its processing and screening facilities, which include dried fruit, coconut, date and nut products (excluding groundnuts).
Petrow Food Group incorporates Petrow Food Industries (PFI) and Quality Kernels which it acquired in 2013 from the Zubrance Group.
The Group combines PFI’s experience in chopping, pasting and slicing dried fruit with Quality Kernels’ expertise in nibbing, grinding, pasting and roasting of a full range of nuts and seeds in a peanut free environment.
It has two plants in the UK including Perivale, West London and a manufacturing site in Suffolk.
Tatchell added, the group will continue with its blending and packaging lines at its Perivale site in West London where it has a segregated facility for the handling of groundnuts and allergens.
Both of the Petrow facilities hold A rating certification under BRC Global Standards and the group is a member of the National Dried Fruits Trade (NDFTA) and Organic Farmers & Growers Associations.