Le Jardin de Rabelais is the latest tomato producer to realise the productivity benefits of a MARCO Trac-IT Yield Control Module driving their packing operations at their Avoine operation in the Loire Valley (France). Specialising in cherry and vine tomatoes, Le Jardin de Rabelais grow, harvest and pack fresh produce seven days a week, all year round. MARCO were tasked with designing a packing system which reduced overpack and provided total control for their packing facility.
The YCM system installed at Avoine, consisting of eight LineMaster smart scales and twenty table top scales, also includes a high-speed labelling system and end of line soft-touch conveyor. Packing facilities around the world have achieved exceptional productivity improvements of up to 30% by installing YCM. The system effectively deskills the manual packing operation, reducing waste and virtually eliminating giveaway/overpack. This directly translates into improved profitability and a rapid return on investment for the MARCO system (always achieved within 12 months or one growing season). For Le Jardin de Rabelais, the smart weighing devices have been pre-programmed to store different types and weights of tomato, making pack line changes very simple and rapid.
Whilst YCM drives the productivity improvements for the weighing and packing process at Le Jardin de Rabelais, operational flow has also been improved with the installation of a comprehensive end-of-line MARCO system. MARCO’s automatic, high-speed labellers can continually and consistently label products at speeds of over 240ppm. For twin-head models, label reels are automatically changed over to ensure the line continues to operate without stops. Once labelled, tomatoes at the Loire Valley facility proceed onto a MARCO soft-touch conveyor. This conveyor includes rollers which maintain the quality of the packed product by reducing friction. The tomato punnets can then be packed into cartons and boxes without fear of any product damage.
Le Jardin de Rabelais’ Managing Director, Mr Delahaye, is impressed with the MARCO system:
“The high speed manual packing of tomatoes presents a number of challenges. MARCO’s YCM has overcome these for our operation and the uplift of productivity has made a significant improvement to our packing operation.”