Installing Lean Manufacturing

The Challenge:

Carpedia was asked to assist in the installation of Lean Manufacturing practices, which was a corporate initiative to help consistently achieve 85%. The challenge was two fold:

  • Cover all three shifts, with a focused attention on the back shifts where the majority of the efficiency variances were manifesting themselves.
  • Shift a factory that had hit a plateau of 79% efficiency into a World Class level of 85%.
  • Coach the entire management team on Active Management techniques to sustain the results.

What Changed

The factory had two key production areas: Filling, which created the pet food and filled it into cans, and Labeling, which labeled the canned product. With its excess capacity, the Labeling Area should have always been starved for production from the Filling Area. Instead, downtime waste in Labeling was resulting in a loss of 3% Filling Efficiency upstream. In the spirit of Lean Manufacturing, changes that were installed to ensure that Labeling continued to pull from Filling included:

  • Installation of SMED (Single Minute Exchange of Dies) Changeover while standardizing procedures across the 3 shifts that reduced required changeover times by 50%.
  • 5S Events on all lines (7 in total) to reduce wasted motion and reduce rework.
  • Training / Empowerment program for those staff, especially on the back shifts, who required more root cause analysis of downtime issues.

With Labeling pulling from Filling, another plateau was hit. For 12 weeks the factory ran consistently at 82%. In order to attain the World Class level of 85%, the second half of Project Lean focused on the Filling Area as well as Maintenance to see how mechanical downtime was being addressed. Changes installed in these two areas included:

  • Installation of SMED Resource Blitz on washouts.
  • Improvement of meat input accuracy and flow.
  • 5S activities to reduce wasted motion during weekly Start-Up and Shut-Down.
  • Enhanced Maintenance Management Infrastructure to increase “Wrench-Time” of maintenance staff.

The Results:

  • All 3 shifts consistently attaining 85% efficiency as measured against the limiting constraint.
  • Operational results that translate into annualized savings that exceed the initial requirement.
  • Production Supervisors’ SMART management time improved from 1% to 9% through on the floor coaching and the implementation of an improved management Infrastructure.
  • Reduction in Brites (cans not labeled right the first time) by 25%.

The Client Experience:

“The training they provided our supervisors was the best I have ever seen. It was hands on, 1 on 1, on shift, on the job, and intense. The training reinforced performance expectations for all supervisors. It gave them tools to effectively identify and solve their shifts problems. It gave them a way to evaluate and measure their own and their shifts performance hour by hour. This training was most likely the single biggest key to success of the project.”

Plant Manager, Del Monte Bloomsburg

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