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Monday, May 20, 2024

Data driven performance improvements with Harford

What is the true cost of doing nothing to reduce your levels of wastage and improve production efficiencies? 

Consumers and producers alike, we are all having to tighten our belts to make ends meet.  Factors outside our control such as the pound’s low value, rising interest, inflation and consumer prices everywhere, not to mention the effect of the Ukrainian war and the aftereffects of Covid, are putting the squeeze on all our budgets.

Packers and processors who supply UK supermarkets have been experiencing this ‘piggy in the middle’ situation for a long time, with higher energy, raw material and labour costs on the one hand, and little or no opportunity to increase prices to the supermarkets, on the other.

However, this recent escalation of costs has put many FMCG manufacturers in a position where they must do something drastic if they are to survive.  Instead, many are hunkering down, reluctant to make new investments and tightening their belts in an effort to survive the current situation.  With insolvencies up 42 percent on last year, some have already done too little too late. Sadly more will follow.

‘Lean’ is no longer the smart manufacturers choice, but a survival necessity

Those seriously committed to continuous improvement will have the vision to see that the best way forward is to interrogate their own end-to-end transformation costs, by looking inwardly to discover every opportunity to reduce giveaway and wastage, and improve their production efficiencies.

‘You can’t improve what you don’t measure’  

Real time accurate information is essential to make cost effective and informed decisions in a timely fashion.

Harford Control have been listening to manufacturers to reduce pressure on pain points for more than 45 years and have consequently created a comprehensive toolkit to prioritise and sustain improvements, to show the fastest possible return on investment.

When Average Quantity Law came into force in 1979, one of the few pieces of legislation which actually works in the manufacturers’ favour, Harford’s Average Weight programme helped manufacturers take maximum advantage of this new standard, by using unique algorithms which combine SPC and actual Process Capability – one of the early examples of machine learning.  This highly developed algorithm meant that, for the first time, users could optimize fill levels and remain legal, whilst requiring fewer process adjustments.  Achieving more, whilst doing less. Overfills as low as 0.1 percent of fill targets became achievable.

A Modular System

By adding different modules to the Harford system, such as automated coding and labelling, paperless quality control, overall equipment effectiveness (OEE), machine Vision and automated short interval control, the Harford information management system continues to develop and links with new and legacy systems alike, in the pursuit of operational excellence and Industry 4.0.

By delivering analysed, prioritised information to the desktops of those who can make a difference, the Harford system shines a light on all parts of the production process, allowing management the opportunity to ‘see’ areas of waste and further opportunities for improvement, in real time.  Thus, product withdrawals and return to manufacturer incidents soon become distant, if painful, memories.

Ever expanding, the Harford system now includes modules for energy management (especially useful in today’s energy-hungry economic climate), together with planned maintenance and laboratory modules, covering all production processes, from goods-in to dispatch.

Double or Even Triple Your Bottom Line Profits

With Food and Beverage manufacturers frequently operating on tiny margins, looking inwardly at end-to-end transformation costs, and finding effective ways to reduce these even by as little as 1 percent of turnover can potentially double or even triple bottom-line profits.  By reducing giveaway, wastage and improving efficiencies, the Harford MIS toolkit is often financed by the hitherto hidden costs.

Some of our clients have reduced overall wastage by 20, even 30 percent. Imagine what such a comprehensive solution could do for you – fewer sleepless nights, less wastage and a more sustainable future.

Is it time to shine a light into your manufacturing darkness?

Contact Harford: info@harfordcontrol.com or phone 01225 764461


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