Tropical food manufacturer upgrades packaging line
ARA Food Corporation has increased capacity, improved efficiency and reduced overheads with the installation of the third packaging system. The investment is part of the company’s drive to expand production and grow its business.
Located in Florida, USA, leading snacks manufacturer ARA manufactures different varieties of snacks and chips, including tropical snacks such as plantain, yuca root and cassava chips, as well as white sweet potato chips, pork rinds and pork cracklings, which increases the need for production capacity. Using specialist techniques and production equipment, ARA successfully handles the demands of the complex manufacturing process with a strong emphasis on quality and safety controls to help meet production efficiency goals. Because of the diversity of its product range, ARA looks for solutions to minimize overheads wherever possible. The company needed a flexible packaging solution capable of handling different bag sizes quickly and efficiently, with minimum machine downtime.
The answer was a new line featuring tna’s high performance robag® FX 3ci vertical form, fill and seal (VFFS) system, complete with a tna intelli-weigh® 0314 omega multi-head weigher, tna metal detector, tna intelli-date® date coder and labeller. Used to pack ARA’s range of snack chips, the system is designed with flexibility in mind, in order to handle different bag sizes – ranging from 2 to 16 oz (60 to 450g) net weight – as well as work with the various polypropylene BOPP bag film finishes required for each product brand.
“Reducing waste, cutting downtime and preventing overweighing were key requirements from the new packaging system. With two tna robag® systems already installed and performing consistently well in our plant, we knew another tna machine was our best option for the additional line. The whole project ran smoothly and we have been particularly impressed with tna’s technical support and knowledge sharing – an important service which will continue with tna’s regular maintenance visits to ensure the machines are always running at 100 per cent capacity,” explains Oscar Tanaka, manufacturing co-ordinator at ARA Food Corporation.
“ARA’s new system is fully integrated, customized and built to maximize uptime as well as bring waste down to a minimum. This system sets new standards in OEE (overall equipment effectiveness) including ground breaking output speeds. We were also able to meet ARA’s request to simplify operations with our integrated design – making changeovers and running the system quick, easy and standardized. The net result is what everyone strives for – greater output with less waste,” adds Jack Newman, tna project manager and regional sales manager.
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