Fresh produce manufacturer Fenmarc has optimised capacity in its prepared vegetables factory and cut waste after implementing Infor’s SCM Advanced Scheduler.
Fenmarc grows, prepares, packs and supplies a variety of produce to major multiples and the wholesale market.
As products have a short shelf life, manufacturing operations must possess accurate and efficient planning methods in order to maximise productivity and boost profitability.
Fenmarc realised in 2008 that its spreadsheet-based planning system could not cope with the demands placed on its prepared vegetables division as it was unable to model the complex batch-led manufacturing environment.
“While our in-house systems could support our core operations, our sophisticated planning requirements extended beyond its capabilities,” says Krystian Kaminski, planning manager, Fenmarc.
The system works by simultaneously scheduling production across six lines and can create a plan for the following day in just 15 minutes. After processing orders, it factors in all stages of the production process, including preparation areas where raw materials are chopped and peeled; washing flumes; six production lines; mixing vats and packaging and sealing machines, and identifies the most efficient approach.
“We now know exactly what raw materials are required, which products have to be mixed and where, together with precise volumes,” Krystian continues. “Additional orders are easily accommodated, as the system revises the production schedule within minutes. Spare capacity can be identified and utilised, which is particularly important in the summer months when demand dips, as we have greater flexibility to shift production to the most efficient assets.
“Inventory has been eliminated altogether in order to invoke our JIT manufacturing model fully, and we now know exactly what resources are required for each day’s production, with no contingency required.”