National Flexible's packaging audits are always successful for our customers even if sometimes in just a small way.
In this instance, like so many, we not only audited packaging lines that our film ran on but lines where our competitors film was employed. Large scale savings were suggested and proposed for just a small change.
The customer had 6 VFFS machines packing a granulated food product in an unprinted film which then was put into a printed carton.
The film used was a barrier OPP (PVDC coated) which had been recommended by a film supplier at the time of machine installation many years previous.
To facilitate the machinery placing the bag in the carton each bag was "punched" by a needle to allow air escape. The action of punching a hole in the film immediately negated the PVDC barrier properties. Thus a premium price film was being incorrectly used.
However, the engineers felt, quite correctly, that the coated film ran faster (thus justifying its use on the line). Our engineers recommendation was a low temperature seal film (LTS) which could accomodate the running speeds required without the need for a barrier coating. (PVDC). Successful trials were completed and the result was a cost saving of £1,200 per tonne. At 65 tonnes per annum that equated to £78,000 per year.
As all the machines were several years old the cost to the business of using the "wrong" film for this application had been hundreds of thousands of pounds saved.