Pipers Crisps Increases Packaging Capcity And Reduces Wastage With tna’s Packaging Innovations

Friday, November 2nd, 2018

Pipers Crisps Ltd. has managed to double its packaging capacity and yet reduce its generated waste due to the installation of high speed packaging solutions from tna. Through an enhanced seal integrity, tna’s solutions has allowed for increased productivity while ensuring that the highest level of product quality is retained and this is aligned to Pipers Crisps’ vision of adopting a new packaging line that can meet additional demand. In fact, the company’s award-winning products have been recognised nationally for their unique and bright packaging design and are distributed throughout the UK, Europe and the US today.

Feeding Increased Demands 

In order to meet increased demands for its variety of snack products, Pipers Crisps required a packaging solution that could increase its current bagging speed of 80 bags per minute (bpm) and switch between two packet sizes. These requirements were met when two tna robag 3ci – vertical, form, fill and seal (VFFS) packaging solutions were installed. As this new set up allowed for a range of bag sizes to be filled at speeds of up to 140 bpm, resulting in a 75 percent rise in productivity which is in line with the company’s capacity uplift. Similarly, the VFFS also allowed for two different pack sizes – 40 and 150 grams – to be filled with minimal changover times due to its lightweight formers, unload assist functions and twin film spindle. This enabled operators to readily switch from one bag size to another on the same packaging line.

Ensuring Seal Integrity And Minimising Wastage

It was also vital for Pipers Crisps’ new packaging line to be able to have an optimal seal integrity and enhance the shelf life of the company’s products. As explained by Simon Hill, Regional Sales Manager at tna, “During the packaging process, pieces of chips can get caught in the bag seal, compromising seal integrity and reducing the shelf life of the product. When this occurs, it can often lead to product rejects and waste.”

Therefore, with its innovative rotary jaw design and advanced sealing technology, tna’s VFFS was highly suitable for enhancing the seal integrity of Pipers Crisps’ new packaging line. Through patented stripper tube closures, it allowed for better control of the product through the packaging and filling cycle and this minimised the accumulation of dust and crumbs in the end seal of the bag. The built in product-in-seal-detection (PISD) software also allows for surveillance of products in the seal and jaw area of the bag and alerts the operator if seal integrity is compromised. This way, Pipers Crisps is able to ensure that each bag fulfils the highest quality standards while ensuring minimal wastage.

Richard Mottram, Factory Manager at Pipers Crisps has commented that: “Before the installation, we experienced a three percent wastage at 80 bpm, as we had to manually detect and remove any bags with compromised end seals or pleats before they entered the packaging area. Now, our wastage is down to one percent at 140 bpm – which has surpassed our expectations. As a result, it has helped us gain better control over product losses and achieve operational cost savings, while contributing to quality assurance.”

Complete Customer Service

Pipers Crisps was able to meet its vision for a new packaging line with tna’s VFFS. As explained by Mottram, “When we first started looking for a VFFS packaging solution to expand our existing fleet, tna was the first name that came to mind. We were initially attracted to the high speed capability and unparalleled product quality. During the project, we were impressed with tna’s forward-thinking attitude and level of support – from specification and project scoping, to trial and implementation.”

However, the implementation and integration of tna’s VFFS into Pipers Crisps’ production line was not without challenges and this was explained by Hill when he stated that, “Installing two new packaging lines into an existing fleet can be challenging. Taking the time to extensively trial how the tna equipment would integrate alongside existing systems was therefore crucial. Once we fully understood Pipers Crisps’ needs, we were able to tailor our systems to fit specific requirements, providing them with flexible, high performance solutions that would meet their long-term production needs,”