The Challenge

This project improved operational efficiencies at three wineries. With Robert Mondavi and Franciscan Estate wineries we focused on Barreling, Cellaring, and Harvesting and in the Canandaigua winery we worked in Cellaring, Bottling, Bottling Support, Maintenance, and Warehousing.
The Cellars at each facility represent the more artistic side of the business with blending, filtering, aging and gentle handling of the wines. The facilities extend across several acres of tanks, pumps, hoses and wine making equipment centers. Millions of wine gallons are transacted weekly and thousands of barrels are touched across 24 hour days, staffed by dozens of employees.
Bottling (9 lines) and warehousing at the Canandaigua East Coast facility were faced with a hectic and volatile bottling schedule that encompassed 9 bottling lines.
Carpedia was invited to perform an opportunity analysis with CWUS in Napa, CA and in Canandaigua, NY in January 2011. Initial studies identified productivity opportunities within each facility’s Front End Operations. Lost time was largely associated with scheduling and volume fluctuations. Bottling lines were observed to run below capacity. Primary challenges related to equipment failures, unnecessary line stoppages and scheduling gaps.

The Results

The Cellar performance has improved on average by 23% at each facility. Employees have been empowered to more effectively execute various tasks and be able to identify and improve off-schedule conditions. The storage of equipment has been standardized to allow the operators to easily locate the necessary apparatus. Area leaders have the planning tools to more effectively schedule the cellar operation and engage in relevant performance discussions with their staff.
Barreling productivity has improved on average by 18% at the two west coast locations. Appropriate crewing has been established on the barrel lines and the work areas have been organized to supplement the typical daily flow. Relevant metrics at the leadership and operator levels have been established to enable constructive performance conversations.

In Bottling, we developed several different method changes which facilitated the reduction of standard line crewing. Equipment failures are better identified and minimized. Running through breaks and lunches, as well standardized shift changeovers were a focus. Preventative maintenance has been scheduled regularly in order to support a 2 shift bottling operation.
In Warehousing, we developed method changes and improved resource planning which reduced significant overtime.
Aggregate financial results are tracking 102% of the planned project cash flow and performance continues to improve.
This client conducts Weekly ‘R2’ performance conference calls among all 12 of their wineries which have been through our projects where best practices are shared and improvement strategies continue to be developed.

The Client Experience

“Your staff demonstrates an uncanny ability to quickly understand the operations, engage our staff in the process and patiently work through ideas and methods for change before developing the appropriate metrics for tracking our progress. Please pass along our thanks for their onsite efforts and tireless Determination.”
Vice President & General Manager, Robert Mondavi Winery, Napa

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