The cleaning of food manufacturing products to match a high volume throughput while optimising manpower usage, are key benefits now arising from a new Oliver Douglas installation for specialist food manufacturer, Discovery Foods. A stand-alone Panamatic 800 washing system is now operational at the Milton Keynes site, which is dedicated to the production of tortillas and wrap breads, for which the manufacturer has a leading reputation in both the retail and business-to-business food sectors.
Producing up to 1.3 million products per day, a total of five dual production lines are operational at the site, each of which utilises a wide range of food manufacturing equipment. This includes stainless steel and plastic rounding drums, utensils and both rubber and plastic moving belts – all of which are now cleaned regularly using the Oliver Douglas Panamatic installation.
“Equipment is moved via a trolley to a dedicated cleaning area where it is loaded into a purpose-designed tray – also developed by Oliver Douglas – and rolled into the front of the Panamatic unit,” comments Brian Clarke, Quality Manager at Discovery Foods. He points out that, because the wash programme is automatic, workers can be released for other duties while the system runs through its pre-programmed sequence. “This is a significant step forward when compared with the time intensive manual jet wash procedures that were used before the Oliver Douglas installation,” he continues.
Once the programme has run, the tray is extracted from the opposite side of the Panamatic for return to the production area. “This twin door design enables the clean and dirty product areas to be kept separate, which clearly has a beneficial impact on process quality,” adds Brian Clarke.
The stainless steel Panamatic 800 utensil washer is the largest of three units in the dedicated washing machine range manufactured by Oliver Douglas for the food industry. Electrically heated and thermostatically-controlled, cleaning is achieved via rotating spray arms, enabling all wash areas to be accessed.
One of the food industry’s most respected manufacturers is now taking full advantage of a new washing installation from Oliver Douglas. The facility, at the McVities factory in Manchester, interfaces directly with a new line that is dedicated to the production of mini Jaffa Cakes and meets a number of key operational aims in terms of both location and throughput.
“The company now utilises a Panamatic 600 industrial washing machine with the prime objective of cleaning weigh-head hoppers,” comments John Glover, Sales Manager at Oliver Douglas. “The front loading unit receives hopper parts slotted into purpose-built wash racks and then completes a wash cycle in no more than three minutes – one of the key requirements specified by the company. The design of the wash rack also minimises loading and unloading times, which makes a further key contribution to fulfilling this objective.”
The Oliver Douglas Panamatic 600 washing machine is able to provide comprehensive washing performance via spray arms that direct the wash solution to all areas of the chamber. Moreover, at McVities the installation has been achieved despite very limited space on site – the unit is located on a mezzanine floor directly adjacent to a multi-head weigher. The Panamatic also features a steam condensing unit in place of an extractor fan – again in recognition of the limited space available to vent the machine – reflecting the versatility of the design. It also accommodates the room’s air conditioning location, which clearly creates a colder atmosphere and thus larger amounts of steam.
“The Panamatic series – which runs from the smaller 600, as at McVities, to a larger 800 unit – is ideally suited to an application of this type,” adds John Glover. “Despite its compact dimensions, it offers a large tank capacity, which minimises the requirement for water changes, is extremely economical in use and is easy to operate and maintain.” He points out that easy access to all jet pipes, spray arms and filters represents an additional important benefit.
“The name of McVities is clearly well–established and highly respected in the industry and we are delighted to have been able to fulfil the company’s specific washing requirements with an installation which, we believe, demonstrates the capabilities and versatility of the Panamatic industrial washer series,” concludes John Glover.