Production line aid for growing dairy

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Advanced automation specialist Knight Warner has helped to solve a major handling problem for a large dairy in Northern Ireland.

The dairy, at Pennybridge in Ballymena, was seeking to expand.

It needed a company which could develop equipment that supplied filling lines with the right size and type of bottle at the right time, in the correct orientation and undamaged.

Chesterfield-based Knight Warner has worked with the UK’s leading producer of plastic milk bottles, Nampak Plastics, to develop a state-of-the-art handling system that can deliver up to 500 bottles every 60 seconds.

Knight Warner technical director Colin Powell said: “Our engineers designed a solution which was manufactured and tested in Chesterfield and then shipped and installed into the dairy in Pennybridge.

“The key was in the integration of our patented stripping system in conjunction with the latest PLC technology and sophisticated safety systems.

“This allowed us to provide a solution which met all the requirements of the dairy, along with the installation of the equipment into the minimum possible footprint.”

The installation comprised of de-baggers, conveyors and management information system interfaces.

Nampak’s commercial director Jamie Tinsley was full of praise for the Chesterfield firm.

“Knight Warner provides us with a full range of in-house services from design, manufacturing, installation and servicing of the equipment.

“This greatly assists in the smooth installation and excellent post installation up time, said Mr Tinsley.

“Applying advanced automation technology to this difficult handling problem is rewarding us with excellent results.”