How to reduce maintenance times for sustainable food manufacturing

A more sustainable approach to food production

Sustainable food manufacturing is possible when quality and quantity measures can coexist. The supply chain needs to be steady, and the food offered needs to be more healthy and eco-conscious than ever before. 

Still, innovating is hard when the sector is playing catch up. After all, the front lines of America’s food supply have been through a lot recently. Despite strain and shortages around certain items, things are now slowly getting back on track, and food firms are making promising progress. 

That said, the swiftness of food manufacturing largely depends on machinery. If such equipment is subject to lengthy maintenance times, then it can disrupt the workflow and put a dent in profits. 

If you’re overseeing food manufacturing logistics yourself, it’s in your best interests to reduce maintenance times responsibly. Here are some insights on how you can do that. 

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Consider Your Food Production Schedule

Every food manufacturer has different maintenance requirements. You must tailor them to your company’s needs. The first thing to consider is the measurement system you’re abiding by. Some manufacturing machines may require maintenance every few weeks, but only under the assumption that it’s used regularly. If you use the same device less frequently, then it’s quite possible you can extend the time needed before maintenance is required and thus tend to these duties less. 

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The second thing to think about is timing things in keeping with your schedule. Food manufacturers can have busy and quieter years, depending on what they make and how. Times of year can also influence costs around maintenance, with things like evaporator rebuilds being easier to perform in winter due to the lower temperatures. Labor costs are also reduced as the refrigeration load isn’t as taxing, either. The costs of unplanned downtime can be staggering, so having a tailored response to it is highly recommended. Maintenance can be timed to occur at the opportune moment for your company rather than when it most inconveniences you. Keep that in mind. 

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Upgrade Your Food Production Equipment

Better equipment requires less maintenance. It’s a simple conclusion to come to. That said, these magnificent food manufacturing machines aren’t always easy to come by. Demand is high, and deceptive firms can rather exaggerate their stock’s capabilities. It’s important to work with trusted entities only, lest you usher in yet more maintenance obligations due to procuring faulty machinery. 

For example, BluePrint Automation’s versatile packing solutions are a good example of what to look for. Their case packer is designed with the specific intention of reducing the need for maintenance to be carried out. Breaded, coated, frozen, baked goods and even chocolates can all be accepted in bulk with this case packer, maximizing your firm’s quantities while ensuring a steady stream of business continuity. 

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Utilize Remote Alarms

No matter how much you plan, things can still go wrong unexpectedly. Disaster can always strike. Fortunately, sensors can now be fitted to food manufacturing machines that detect whether the equipment is in good order or requires more care. 

These sensors can be monitored remotely, too, even from smartphone devices. Systems can then be monitored at any time from any place, which gives your food manufacturing firm a more dynamic approach to maintenance needs. For some maintenance-related problems, the sooner things are repaired, the better. Otherwise, damages and faults can worsen, extending the costs and time required to implement fixes. Through remote monitoring, hands can be on deck always. 

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Train Your Workers

Every employee of a food manufacturer influences how much maintenance takes place. If everyone adheres to best practices and machinery is used properly, it will all reduce the need for repairs. 

Ensure training on operating manufacturing machinery comes from a reputable provider and runs like clockwork. Place signs up in the workplace, too, reminding employees of best practices. Encourage workers to instruct and support one another. Ultimately, everyone has a part to play.

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