Saturday 22nd Oct 2016 - Logistics Manager

Evolutionary clear solution for packaging pond filters

When Bradford-based chemical manufacturer AH Marks & Co wanted to transform its storage density and warehouse efficiency, it found the solution in Narrow Aisle’s Flexi lift truck. AH Marks produces a wide range of specialised organic chemicals for end use sectors including agrochemical, pharmaceutical and petrochemicals manufacturers.

The company is using two Flexis at two of its warehouses, which are used to store organic weedkillers. The products are packaged into a wide variety of formats, ranging from one litre bottles to 25kg bags, and AH Marks also produces chemicals in 750kg bags and steel drums. Several different types of product are often stored on one pallet ready for despatch to customers.

Before the Flexis arrived, one of the warehouses was equipped with drive-in racking while the other had a block-stacked system.

The company’s warehouse and distribution coordinator, Alison Moger, says: “Using conventional forklifts, neither of these systems was making the best use of space or operating to maximum efficiency. In addition we were about to implement a company-wide computer system to manage everything from production to orders and delivery. To ensure coordination with this new system, we needed to increase our storage capacity and improve the effectiveness of the whole operation.”

AH Marks decided to install a very narrow aisle (VNA) system in both warehouses, served by the two Flexi Generation 3 lift trucks. By reducing the aisle widths, the company has significantly increased its pallet capacity. Moger explains: “The new computer system now instructs drivers to pick individual batches and pallets for loading onto delivery vehicles. This would not have been feasible under the old drive-in and block stacking method, but the Flexi enables pallets to be located quickly and easily.”

Narrow Aisle is one of several VNA lift truck and order picker companies which will be participating in Logistics Link 2004, n Designers at Cricklade-based The Great Western Packaging Company have developed an innovative packaging solution for transporting high-performance pond filtration systems worldwide.

The packaging, for Evolution Aqua, comprises three components held together with a special plastic clip and has also helped to reduce assembly time for packing the filter manufacturer’s 45kg rotor moulded MDPE filter specially developed for Koi carp keepers.

Ian Heskins, sales director at The Great Western Packaging Company, says: “We were able to streamline the design from the previous version which was cumbersome for storage purposes as it contained a variety of different shaped components while we improved the strength of the packaging using the plastic clip instead of tape.”

About two-thirds of Evolution Aqua’s filter products are exported. As a result, The Great Western Packaging has also developed a shower-resistant coating which has been incorporated onto the packaging to boost protection.Chemicals