Smart conveyors for maximum operational efficiency

In today’s competitive environment food and beverage manufacturers want robust material handling solutions to ensure trouble free and low cost operations. They want flexible conveyor systems that can be easily adapted to deal with continuously changing consumer demands and new product introductions.

A typical food producer would have around 200 SKUs with up to 12 active items in production at any point in time. This requires smart conveyor systems to handle multiple lines operating at different speeds and carrying various pack sizes around the factory floor. Solutions must be operator friendly, allow for rapid change over, and be easy to maintain and clean to minimise valuable downtime. From an engineering design perspective material handling systems must be able to deal with high volume and capacity, optimise floor space, and meet strict mechanical and electrical requirements for improved production efficiency. Manufacturers also expect long life-expectancy and fast installation to reduce ramp-up time.

These elements combined present a complex scenario requiring industry know-how, engineering expertise and high quality modular systems to offer a robust solution. FlexCAM, a full service conveyor system specialist understands these needs too well having worked with several major food producers over the past 20 years in Australia and New Zealand. Total cost of ownership (TCO) and overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) are two key performance factors for FMCG manufacturers, says Steve Alcorn, Managing Director of FlexCAM Australia and New Zealand. “Our engineered solutions offer our customers on average 25 per cent reduction in cleaning time, up to 40% increase in floor space and a minimum of 98 per cent operating efficiency. Our ability to conduct simulation on our in house CAD tool enables us to test our designs and make changes to optimise production flows, ” says Alcorn.

Conveyors go beyond just moving products from one machine to the next. Well-designed conveyors are engineered to add value at every step of the manufacturing process to improve overall operational efficiency, safety and cleanliness.