Wm Morrisons Ltd. is the fourth biggest retailer and the second largest food manufacturer in the UK. In order to meet the increasing demand for bakery products in its stores, Morrisons decides to expand its existing Wakefield bakery plant.
Morrisons chose Spiromatic to manage the expansion implementation, based on their extensive and specific expertise in pre-food processing, including storage, conveying and dosing of powdered and minor ingredients in industrial applications.
The Wakefield bakery still uses manual labour for weighing and dosing the ingredients and putting them into the mixers. This method has several disadvantages:
- It is labour intensive
- Increases the risk of inaccuracy
- Has high potential for physical contamination
- And it can lead to delays in production
The new system not only needed to overcome all the above issues, moreover, it also needed to take into account the high throughputs of the line and ensure continuous production cycles.
Another crucial factor to reckon with was the physical properties of some of the ingredients used: they are susceptible to moisture and start clumping if exposed too long to a damp environment. Therefore, working closely together with Morrison’s ingredient supplier was another prerequisite, which needed to lead to the most optimal infrastructure design.
Spiromatic designed and implemented a tailor-made and fully automated production process, including:
- A barcode reader to prevent incorrect ingredients feed
- A bag dump/filter system that auto fills and vacuum conveys the accurately weighed and dosed ingredients directly to the mixers
- An integrated flour feed
- A completely closed circuit, this way avoiding contamination and possible moistening of ingredients
- An integrated automation with full process visualisation, including logging and lot tracking functionalities and an interface with the mixing systems
- 24/7 remote control system and helpdesk support
The new Spiromatic system answers all the needs set at the start of the
- It has removed the need for manual labour at the mixing end of the new line completely.
- It has achieved a level of accuracy in excess of the design specifications
- It also provides a level of traceability that was not achievable before.
It is a concept that can be fitted retrospectively to existing production lines and proactively to new ones and hence, incorporates everything needed to becoming the new standard for the baking industry in the UK and abroad.