Thursday 27th Oct 2016 - Logistics Manager

Size, weight and capacity critical

Centura Foods has specified a fleet of Still forklift and warehouse trucks for goods movement operations at its manufacturing, packaging and distribution plant at Middlewich, Cheshire.

The company, part of the RHM Group, is one of the UK’s largest independent food manufacturers and produces brands such as Bisto at its Middlewich plant.

Supplied by Lancashire (Fork Truck) Services, the Still fleet comprises two FM-14 reach trucks, four EGU powered pallet trucks and nine electric counterbalance forklifts – five R50-10s, one R50-15, two R20-15s and one R20-20.

With perishable products, stocks of raw ingredients have to be kept to a minimum and rotated efficiently. Incoming deliveries of raw ingredients and packaging materials are unloaded from lorries by the R50-10 electric counterbalance forklifts and EGU powered pallet trucks.

Centura applied very precise criteria when the forklift truck fleet was being specified. The company’s Stuart Walton explains: “We use goods lifts to move the trucks between the different levels of the factory and it is obviously very important to make sure we have the correct weight and mast height specifications.”

Once the raw ingredients are in the goods-in warehouse, the R50 forklifts are further used to transport them to the relevant areas of production as and when they are needed. The EGU powered pallet trucks move products the short distances between the production lines, while an EGU 20-S powered pallet truck fitted with a ride-on platform is used for longer journeys around the factory.

The packaged goods are palletised either directly in the main storage warehouse, or transported to the goods-out docking bays, where they are unloaded by the EGU machines. In the storage warehouse, two FM-14 reach trucks place the goods into the racking ready for picking prior to onward distribution.