Wold Top Brewery invests in case packing automation

Award-winning family-owned Wold Top Brewery has recently installed an automatic wrap-around case packing machine from packing and wrapping specialists, Atlanta UK. The investment, which replaces a manual case packing and shrink wrap operation at their site, has generated production efficiencies with scope to enable future growth. There are environmental benefits and a positive re-direction of labour resources resulting in reduced exposure to repetitive strain injury.

Using traditional methods to produce high-quality beers from their 600-acre farm high on the Yorkshire Wolds, the brewery asked Atlanta UK to provide them with an automated solution to replace the manual tray and plastic shrink wrap process being used to pack their beer products. Atlanta UK introduced Wold Top to two similar microbreweries producing cardboard case-packed product using the Atlanta Raffaello. Following several project meetings at Wold Top to fully understand their requirements, Atlanta UK were able to design a bespoke solution to meet their objectives.

The Atlanta Raffaello machine is ideal for medium levels of production. Automatically collating the loose product into pack format, then forming and glueing the carton around the product from a flat blank. The Wold Top solution included an infeed accumulation conveyor to receive and buffer product from the production line. Further new conveyors to the outfeed completed the full solution.

As a result, Wold Top also accrue some key environmental benefits, including no plastic usage, improved recyclability of material and greatly reduced energy in their packing operation.

“Installation of the Raffaello system was a very smooth process and the complete solution was commissioned on time. I can’t fault Atlanta UK for their service and support – they provide a knowledgeable single point of contact and look for solutions, rather than focus on installing just a machine,” said Alex Balchin, a director at Wold Top Brewery. “The equipment not only helps improve efficiencies, it has also made us move away from our previous process to complete carton board units, which is definitely a plus from a sustainability point of view.”

Atlanta UK’s Roger Cope added: “Wold Top Brewery was using an old method of fulfilment that was inefficient and restrictive to growth. The right thing to do was to automate the process and at the same time, move to a full cardboard carton. We took time to review a number of layout solutions which involved re-working conveyors and retaining the option of their existing shrink wrap facility before we settled on a complete solution based around our Atlanta Raffaello case packing machine.”