Ishida technology proves a sound investment for mushroom specialist

An Ishida multihead weigher has enabled a leading French specialist mushroom and vegetable supplier to optimise the packing of its new pan-fried range, significantly increasing production while reducing product giveaway to deliver an attractive return on investment.

Francep, part of the Gelpass Group, offers a variety of premium vegetable products for the retail and foodservice sectors, with its reputation based in particular on wild mushrooms as well as potatoes and chestnuts. More recently the company has extended its portfolio to include processed products such as pan-fried mushrooms, pan-fried vegetables and cooked mashed potato.

While Francep was already using multihead weighing for its pan-fried vegetables incorporating specialist ingredients, including quinoa, bulgur and semolina, the previous machine was achieving low productivity and an unacceptable amount of giveaway.

The solution from Ishida was a 16-head multihead weigher from its CCW-RVE range which has delivered a 20% increase in productivity together with a 4% reduction in product loss.

The new weigher is part of a €3 million investment at Francep’s factory in Saint-Viance. The company’s selection of the CCW-RVE-216 was based on its very positive experience of Ishida technology on another of its packing lines, including the ease of use of the machine and Ishida’s high levels of service in terms of after-sales support and spare parts supply.

“We were already well aware and totally satisfied with the capabilities of Ishida technology,” explained Francep’s Site Director, Saint-Viance, Jérôme Prévost. “We were therefore confident that the company would find the best solution for our particular requirements.”

The 16-head Ishida RVE model features a set of booster hoppers, fitted directly under the weigh hoppers. This doubles the number of available hoppers, all of which utilise Ishida’s unique triple combination calculation software that can calculate three optimal weight combinations, double check them and then select the one nearest to the target weight – all in a single cycle. Product is discharged into the packs via two three-litre timing hoppers. All contact parts feature a stainless-steel coating with a raised surface that prevents product sticking and keeps it moving through the weigher.

In addition, the weigher’s rugged construction and hygienic design that prevents water ingress help to ensure long-term reliability.

At Francep, the machine is in operation for two daily seven-hour shifts for eight months of the year, and one daily seven-hour shift for the other four. The current 50 weighments per minute is well within its top speed of 100 packs per minute. This gives Francep the potential to further expand production capacity, with the line currently operating at around 80 percent capacity.

“We are highly satisfied with our investment and the Ishida is living up to its promises,” confirmed Jérôme Prévost. “We currently process about 100 tonnes of product per month and are confident we can increase this up to around 140 to 160 tonnes.”

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button