Odense Marcipan improves their work environment with yet another palletising solution
Creates a better work environment
Frees up ressources for quality checks
Customised automation solution
Increased machine efficiency
Odense Marcipan faced a series of challenges in production that negatively impacted their working environment and employees' well-being. These challenges included heavy lifting, monotonous repetitive tasks, and poor working postures.
Odense Marcipan invested in an automation solution from BILA. The solution was implemented in the production process to handle the heavy marzipan blocks and perform the task with precision and accuracy.
The palletising solution enabled Odense Marcipan to streamline their production, reduce physical strain on employees, and significantly enhance the working environment. It also freed up time for other important tasks, resulting in increased efficiency.
Focus on creating the best work environment to ensure employee well-being
Odense Marcipan is the world's leading producer of marzipan and marzipan-related products, making the company's products a trusted presence in all markets that use marzipan. On an annual basis, they sell approximately 9,000-10,000 products, including both self-produced items and traded goods.
In the production at Odense Marcipan, 1,500 units of 10- and 12.5 kg marzipan blocks are produced and packed daily, destined for their industrial customers. This task was previously performed manually and took a toll on their operators due to the heavy lifting, monotonous repetitive work, and poor working postures.
However, at Odense Marcipan, there is a strong focus on being proactive when it comes to occupational health, employee well-being, and ensuring sustainable production. Therefore, investments were needed, says Project Manager Morten Krogh Starostka, who is responsible for investment projects in production related to occupational health, sustainability, and efficiency at Odense Marcipan.
"Top priority is our working environment. That's the primary focus, so it's clear that it's something we need to ensure to protect our employees,"
Morten Krogh Starostka, Project Manager
With the implementation of a Kawasaki robot, Odense Marcipan has eliminated these challenges, making a noticeable difference. "We have removed around 770 lifts per day, equivalent to lifting 260 elephants in a year," Morten explains.
"Now we have reached the point where we have no hands-on involvement with the packages, as the robot does the work for us," says Erling Rasmussen, Health and Safety Representative.
With responsibility for occupational health and sustainability in production, Morten also believes it is crucial to take care of employees by creating conditions that significantly reduce taxing tasks.
Therefore, it is essential to preempt injuries and strains so that their employees are protected as much as possible. Consideration must also be given to the next generation, says Erling.
"Right now, it's actually the slightly younger staff over by the production line, and we need to take care of them. They are the ones who will take over when the rest of us stop in about 10 years. They should be able to carry the torch forward,"
Erling Rasmussen, Health and Safety Representative
Previously, Odense Marcipan ensured the working environment with other solutions, such as rotation shifts and assistive tools, to avoid burdening operators over an extended period. However, now they are not burdening them at all, and in this way, the BILA solution contributes to employee well-being in the workplace.
Operators react positively to new technology
There is no doubt that the automation solution has contributed to creating value by improving the working environment for Odense Marcipan's employees, and the reaction has been overwhelmingly positive.
"We can sense from the operators that they are super happy with the solution, and they feel that they are not as tired when they go home. So it has certainly relieved our operators, and it will provide a benefit in the long run," says Morten Krogh Starostka, Project Manager.
Erling mentions that at other companies, he hears that employees have a slight aversion to robots, but that is certainly not the case at Odense Marcipan.
"At Odense Marcipan, it has come gradually, and people have gotten used to it, so they are actually happy that new technology is coming to address their problem areas. The talk always circulates when we listen to the grapevine that something is coming to relieve us, and it is always well-received," says Erling Rasmussen, Health and Safety Representative.
Automation solution yields additional benefits
There is undoubtedly more time for administrative tasks, according to Erling. In addition to improving the working environment, the BILA -solution has yielded a couple of additional benefits, freeing up resources for other important tasks. It has also influenced increased efficiency, as operators previously had to both pack and document, but now that they don't have to pack, there is more time for documentation and quality assurance.
"Operators have more time for the documentation required in connection with food production to ensure that everything is done correctly. This has meant that we have been able to speed up our line a bit and thus increase the speed," says Morten Krogh Starostka, Project Manager.
BILA has delivered a solution tailored to Odense Marcipan's needs—and in high quality
The choice of BILA as a partner is based on two things:
1 | BILA has taken into account Odense Marcipan's needs.
2 | Good experiences with BILA from previous collaborations.
Odense Marcipan does not have unlimited space in their production, and therefore, finding a partner who could address this challenge was essential. Morten explains:
"BILA creates a solution that is really tailored to our needs. We are very limited in our space in the packing area, so they create a solution that fits very well into our set-up,"
Morten Krogh Starostka, Project Manager
There has generally been a very good dialogue between Odense Marcipan and BILA, with several weekly meetings contributing to reaching the desired system. As Odense Marcipan already possessed a BILA Kawasaki robot, they knew the quality they could expect—both in terms of the product and the collaboration.
"At the same time, we already had a BILA Robot, so we were familiar with BILA, which also made it a collaboration we wanted to continue," says Morten Krogh Starostka, Project Manager.
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