PA Win Award For Innovation

Packaging Automation are the proud winner of a PPMA Group Industry Award in the Innovative Processing System category for their brand new MiWeigh weigh scale system. The awards were held on Tuesday 25th September at The Hilton, Birmingham.

The MiWeigh system has now provided many customers with a cost saving product that has had a direct impact on their financial performance. The unique features and the low cost of ownership of the product have made it stand out in the market and already attracted great interest from food packers and processors.

Commenting on the award, PA’s Operations Director Neil Ashton said:
“With an increase in the requirement for more automation and better efficiencies during the past 12 months, we found many customers in the convenience and fresh produce markets were looking to improve the process of weighing their products into the tray. This is a very manual element of the packing process with high labour costs and the potential for high value give away.

PA wanted to develop a product that would speed up the preparation of products and improve pack weight accuracy therefore reducing give away. Additionally the goal was to provide live information to line leaders that could highlight training requirements for the product assembly line workers. The fact that we have won an innovation award for all our efforts and hard work is just fantastic, we are so proud of our team and our achievements”.

PA’s R&D team worked closely with Freshtime, a Lincolnshire producer of value added, ready to eat vegetable and salad products to develop the hardware and software to optimise the setup of weigh scales, improve the weighing of products into trays and punnets with a data collection system and simple to understand visual go-no go graphics.

Matthew Codd Continuous Improvement Manager from Freshtime commented:
“The new weigh scales have transformed our business, on average give away on some of our high cost proteins are as low as 1% which is a saving of up to 4.5% compared to before MiWeigh was installed and we are seeing some speeds have almost doubled from 12 weights per minute to 21 per minute. We now have visibility of training needs which is provided by the system and have a more accurate and truer picture of the packing cost per unit from the batch report generated from each run. The scale interface is very simple to set up and helps reduce the need for line operative training.”

Background
Packaging Automation is a well established specialist in the design and manufacture of tray sealing and pot filling and sealing machinery which is used in the packaging of a wide range of food products. Core markets include fresh convenience food, fresh produce, dairy, ready meals as well as confectionery and baked products.