The installation of the latest Ishida snacks packing solution, 18 head multihead weighers and Atlas bagmakers with integrated total packaging systems (iTPS) software, at Kolak Snack Foods in Park Royal, London, is helping to nearly triple output of the company’s ranges of crisps and extruded snacks.
In its twin configuration, the new Ishida integrated total packaging systems (iTPS) take up only about one and half times the space of a previous single multihead weigher and bagmaker, yet are able to deliver around 220 bags per minutes for crisps and as much as 280 bags per minute for extruded snacks, compared to 80 and 90 bags respectively with the older equipment. At the same time, they are achieving accuracy to within 1% of target weight.
The iTPS systems also form part of a multipack operation with individual packs able to be transferred to one of two 16 head Ishida RZ series weighers. These can produce multipacks of ten or 12 same variety packs at 40 per minute, and 32 packs of four different varieties at 30 per minute.
Established in 1985, Kolak is one of the UK’s leading snack food manufacturers, supplying a wide range of crisps and extruded snacks to the major retailers throughout the UK and Europe, as well as its own ranges of products under the Kolak, Jacksons, Diamond and Dylan’s brands. The arrival of the new Ishida iTPS systems follows the company’s latest investment of nearly £10m in a new factory next to its existing premises, dedicated to the production of extruded snacks.
Kolak processes in excess of 100t of potatoes each day, producing more than 25 million bags of snacks and crisps every week, made up of around 350 different SKUs. In such a constantly busy environment, speed and accuracy of the weighing equipment, along with fast changeovers, are essential to maximise efficiencies and production throughput and it is for this reason that the company has continued to invest in equipment over the years.
In fact, the company’s relationship with Ishida dates back to the 1980s and the installation of Ishida S Series weighers, and Kolak has regularly introduced new Ishida models since then, each one bringing further enhancements.
As well as their speed, accuracy and compact dimensions – vital to maximise factory space in the new facility – Kolak cites the long-term performance of Ishida equipment as a vital benefit.
"The build quality, reliability and integrity of the kit are second to none," comments Kolak Snack Foods director Rikin Lakhani. "You only have to look at the longevity of our S Series weighers to see this."
Equally important, says Rikin, are the high levels of service that Ishida delivers.
"It is not simply a question of buying the right equipment," he explains. "Aftercare is just as important, and the service and support that Ishida give us is exemplary. They understand what we want, provide the right solution, and if we do ever have a problem or issue, they respond very quickly."
Ishida also has a huge presence of over 50 checkweighers – mainly DACS-W and the latest DAC-G models – throughout the Kolak operation. These provide vital final weight checks in line with supermarket quality control requirements.
"When it comes to checkweighers, there is no competition," says Rikin.
Kolak has further ambitious development plans in the pipeline and Ishida equipment will continue to play an important role in these.
"I am certain this relationship will endure and prosper for many more years," added Rikin.