Manufacturing Execution System specialists MARCO have installed a ground breaking factory wide MES solution at Bakkavor’s Cucina Sano plant in Lincolnshire, which produces high quality, hand-crafted salads, deli products, and ready meals for Marks & Spencer.
There are currently five meal assembly lines, fitted with 40 LineMaster portion control scales operating in ‘takeaway’ mode and connected via secure RF links to the central Editor PC. The LineMaster has been specifically developed for high speed manual assembly of meals and its simple, yet highly effective, 16 segment coloured bar graph immediately gives a clear indication of whether the amount of product added to the tray is over, under or within weight tolerance. The operators soon ‘tune in’ to such visual systems and simply pack to the ‘green light’ without having to think about the actual weights. This system is ‘language transparent’ making it ideal for multinational operators.
Our working environment is dynamic to say the least and requirements can change rapidly. MARCO and Trac-IT have been able to respond to this in a timely and efficient manner. This now enables us to use real time data to aid the management decision making process.
In addition, the LOT traceability function means we can confidently identify the exact stock move-ment for any item through the factory, from Goods In to the final packed product. As an added con-trol, our QA team can now create user defined checks at any part of the process via a PDA linked into the overall system. For instance authorised personnel can accept/reject/ quarantine deliveries at Goods In for specified reasons, posting comments as appropriate.
Jon Norman – Cucina Sano IT/IS Manager