Contributed by Synerlink
“When Chobani contacted us in October 2011, they introduced a very challenging project in terms of delivery time, cost and scope of supply. In less than one year we delivered the first complete packaging production line to Chobani’s plant in Idaho,” said Vincent Altazin, Sales Manager for Arcil in France.
According to Arcil, Chobani approached them because form-fill-seal technology (FFS) allows the production of a thinner-walled cup, which means a reduction in plastic consumption.
“Our company has designed and manufactured form-fill-seal lines for the dairy industry since 1978 so this technology is quite a standard in France and Europe.” said Altazin. “They did not have the time or resources to manage such a big project, so we responded with our Synerlink project engineering structure that proposes a global approach. This includes the supply and installation of the whole packaging line, along with a performance warranty.”
Several orders were then placed by Chobani to Synerlink in 2012. The latest one, a complete packaging line for the production of Flip cups was the most challenging project Synerlink had to complete. This included:
- a FFS line forming 5.3-oz cups with two compartments in polystyrene
- integration of a net weight scale for the filling of mixed cereal in the smaller compartment
- a Dosil filler for the filling of Greek yogurt in the main compartment
- the sealing of the cups produced and filled at a capacity of 21,600 cups per hour.
The downstream equipment includes an Aprium-Technology robot that collates the cups prior to the Schleuter label applicators. The Aprium case packer then loads and then seals the finished cups into corrugated cases. As a Synerlink partner, Tecma pack supplied the case erector and the case stacker/elevator to complete the line.
“Before the line was sold, a lot of ideas were exchanged to determine the best design option for the shape of the cup to meet Chobani’s requirements of a two-compartment container,” said Harry Marovskis, director of sales for Synerlink USA.
“We proposed several drawings and mock-ups and knew this was a strategic project for our customer with a definitive market date. In the end we were able to conceive, assemble and test the complete line within eight months. We delivered a highly efficient, full production packaging line only because we involved our engineers from the inception of the project.”
Managing the entire project required a strong involvement from the project manager and the team behind him.
“Once the order is launched, the Synerlink project manager becomes the single point of contact for all demands and requests by the customer. He manages the engineered packaging solutions between the different suppliers within the packaging line,” Altazin explained. “From sourcing the appropriate supplier able to fill the cereal at high-speed, including the parts-washing machine, to the full integration of all equipment with Rockwell automation, it was a huge undertaking!”
The Synerlink magic took place on the Arcil production floor as all of the partners cooperated to assemble the complete line and proceed to the first tests. A unique complete-line factory acceptance test (FAT) took place prior to shipment. Transport was then a big challenge: the load totaled 84 tons and a full cargo plane was needed. Despite the tight delivery schedule, including the Christmas season, Arcil delivered exactly on time to the plant.
The objective of the FAT is to achieve a smooth production start-up at the customer site resulting in a quick ramp-up to full production capacity.
“The involvement of the local field service team for Synerlink USA, in partnership with Chobani’s on-site team, was integral in fulfilling the start-up production date” said Synerlink Technical Service Manager Patrick Bonin.
“Because of the effort by the Synerlink organization, we can say that we are the supplier for the major Greek yogurt producers in the USA today,” Marovskis said.
Synerlink is a global packaging solution provider created by Arcil and supported by elite machinery manufacturers. Decades of experience from the individual companies have been brought together to form a complementary group of worldwide experts in the field of industrial packaging solutions. Synerlink chooses its packaging machinery partners as experts in their domain of activity. The current major partners are Arcil, Aprium-Technology, Dosil, and Tecma Pack. Contact email@example.com
Arcil designs and manufactures integrated form-fill-seal high-performance thermoforming lines. With more than 25 lines delivered every year on five continents, Arcil continues to be the world leader for individual portion, ultra-clean packaging of milk products and desserts. With its trade partners for design, filling, overwrapping and case packing, Arcil has developed the Synerlink organizational structure to offer its customers global engineering proposals. Arcil’s involvement starts by studying customer marketing requirements and continues through setting up complete industrial production lines with guaranteed performance. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org