When we had a private consultant audit our entire manufacturing process, it was in the packaging area where we needed the most help. The computer printout showed every detail of how things went from raw materials into packages ready for retail sale. Our auger filler machines we had took too long to package our products according to industry standards. Our employees had too much downtime when machines failed or needed cleaned.
We package about 10 different food products on the same equipment. We meticulously clean the machines between each run. It takes a lot of time because our machines break down into so many pieces, and they have nooks and crannies where debris can build up. We needed machines that were cleaner running and easier to clean between product runs. Have you ever seen on the back of a package where it has a warning that this product is packaged on equipment that also packages soy and nuts? That warning is there even for products that do not contain soy or nuts as a warning to those who have allergies. The reason is because no matter what you do to clean a machine, a little of the old product is left behind.
Well, our new auger filler machines are much easier to clean as thoroughly as we want them cleaned. We do package a soy product, four different nut products and five cereal and grain products. We leave the warning on the packaging according to industry standards, but I must say that these new machines we have clean up very well and very fast. Our production downtime is almost nonexistent now. Our output has increased by over 93 percent! We had to up the capacity of staff to produce product to be packaged in order to now keep up with what was once the slowest department in our manufacturing process.