2009 Innovation Insight Awards: Food manufacturer bags big savings with performance management solution

MOST INNOVATIVE PROCESS ¦ THIRD PLACE Parsec Automation develops software that makes manufacturing operations more efficient. This past year Parsec used its flagship TrakSYS package to help a canned food manufacturer determine the best strategy for revamping its production lines. That project earned Parsec Automation third place in the Most Innovative Process category in MBT's 2009 Innovat...

By Malcolm Wheatley, Senior Contributing Editor July 1, 2009

MOST INNOVATIVE PROCESS

Parsec Automation develops software that makes manufacturing operations more efficient. This past year Parsec used its flagship TrakSYS package to help a canned food manufacturer determine the best strategy for revamping its production lines.

That project earned Parsec Automation third place in the Most Innovative Process category in MBT’s 2009 Innovation Insight Awards competition.

The California-based food manufacturer, bumping up against capacity constraints, had decided to replace some of its 35 canning lines with ‘pouch’ lines offering higher filling speed and better yield. But it wasn’t quite sure which of two competing vendors to purchase the lines from.

The wrong decision could potentially disrupt production, and cost upward of $20 million in the first year.

Using TrakSYS to collect real-time data from tests of competing pouch lines gave the manufacturer the information it needed to make an intelligent decision.

Not only did the system help in vendor selection, it also altered the manufacturer’s original thinking on how many lines to purchase.

Initially, the manufacturer planned to retire 20 canning lines and replace them with 12 higher-performing pouch lines. But the TrakSYS-based analysis indicated that 24 canning lines could be retired, and it would only take eight pouch lines to replace them. That resulted in a savings of $8 million in capital costs. The company also will save $2 million in annual maintenance costs by retiring the canning lines.

https://www.parsec-corp.com/products_traksys.asp