Automatic weighing, registration and management of traceability data
In their new hide centre in Denmark, Himmerlandskød has implemented a production process with the ScanPlant NG system for rapid quality determination and full traceability on hides, which provides higher sales prices.
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On April 1st, Himmerlandskød A/S opened their own new hide centre in Rødkjærsbro. Here they receive 110,000 pcs of hide annually from their own slaughterhouses, hides that are cooled, quality controlled and sorted. The hides are sold through Norilia Nordic AS, which is a joint venture between Himmerlandskød A/S and Norilia AS in Norway.
Himmerlandskød A/S has been ambitious with the project and set up a number of criteria that the new production system should be able to meet. The system should be automated and at the same time handle the following tasks:
- Ensure high quality of the fresh hides by rapid cooling
- Weigh and classify the hides by breed, quality, weight
- Sort the hides depending on breed, quality and weight
- Control traceability data on the hides
- Automatically generate settlement item no. and sales item no. with traceability data
When Himmerlandskød A/S receives the hides, it is important that they get through production quickly and are cooled down. Production Manager Søren Andersen explains the process; “In order to maintain a high quality of the hide for further processing, it is required that the hide is cooled as quickly as possible and as well as possible. We bring the hide down to a very low temperature within approx. 9. min. - it helps maintain the high quality of the hide”.
- The quality of the hides deteriorates rapidly at too high a temperature
- Many different parameters are included in the quality determination of the hides
- Difficult to handle and manage traceability data, linked to the individual hides
- Overview of hides in stock for disposal for sales orders
- Automatic weighing system in conveyor line for fast transport of hides for cooling
- IT system for quality determination and automatic registration of quality parameters
- IT system for handling all traceability data throughout the process
- Integration between SAP and ScanPlant Order Manager
- High quality ensures better sales prices
- Optimized workflow and large time savings
- 100% traceability on the hides gives higher prices
- Complete stock overview ensures fast order processing
Registration and management of data throughout production
To control the production flow in the factory, Himmerlandskød chose to invest in a new manufacturing execution system; Scanplant NG. This system registers the quality of the hides, determines the sorting based on quality and keeps track of both item numbers, traceability and stock as well as shipping.
The hide is automatically assigned a settlement item number, which matches weight, quality and master data. In the same way, the hide is assigned a sales item number, which is based on quality, weight class, and breed. Throughout the process, the Scanplant system constantly keeps track of the hides' settlement item no. as well as the assigned sales item no., incl. traceability data.
Søren Andersen explains; “We can control data all the way through production - it works quite well. We quickly establish the traceability data we need on each individual hide. And then we use it to sort the hides - it is an automated system that subsequently sorts the hides. This is done based on the quality registration and weight result as well as the information we have from the CHR-register about the animal's origin”.
He continues; “The animals have a CKR number, where all information is located - and we have chosen to use it as the unique number in our production system. The CKR no. follows the hide, from the moment it arrives at the factory and until it leaves the factory. And then we have the 100% traceability, which means we can offer our customers information about where the animal was raised, how old it is, what type and breed it is - we can even go back and see which mother and father the animal had”.
Traceability data is a quality parameter
When questioned whether traceability data is an important quality parameter for the company's customers, Søren Andersen answers; “We are one of the few hide centres that can provide 100% traceability of the hides we sell. We want to tell the story of each hide - so when a company in Italy produces a nice sofa or an expensive bag, they can put an origin mark that documents that the hide that was used comes from an organic cow in Denmark".
He continues; "The high quality of the hides combined with traceability data means that we can get a better price".
- The traceability on the hides are:
Synchronized production and data flow
The production process is designed so that the hides are handled efficiently with automatic weighing and registration.
After receiving the hides, they are driven to start-up and tipped up on a infeed system. Each hide is hung on a hook with an integrated RFID tag that has a unique ID number and is guided on the overhead track system for registration. Here, the operator inspects the hide and registers the quality in the ScanPlant system on pt9000.
The earmark with CKR no. is automatically scanned by a reader and the read traceability data is associated with the chip number. CKR no. is printed on a label, which is affixed to the hide. Then the hide is taken to automatic registration using the RFID tag to ensure synchronization.
The hide is weighed on overhead track scale no. 1 and - based on the weighing result - the hide's weight class is calculated, which is linked to the hook's piece no. The ScanPlant system now generates a settlement item number, which is assigned to the hide.
The hide is then pulled through an ice bath and further into a cold room, where it hangs for 60 min. Then it is taken to automatic registration using the RFID tag to ensure synchronization and then on to automatic control weighing on overhead track scale No. 2. Based on quality, breed, weight class and age, the hide is automatically sorted into tubs or big-boxes.
The ScanPlant system now generates a sales item number, which is assigned to the tub/big-box, and a batch label is printed, which is placed on the tub or big-box. Then the tub or big-box is taken to a cold storage room and data is exported to SAP. In SAP, the hides/tubs can now be handled and sales orders entered, which are transferred to Scanplant's Order Manager. Based on the transferred sales orders, the finished tubs or big-boxes can now be dispatched. In ScanPlant, a load number is created when the tubs are moved into the truck. Then the sales order can be completed and the customer can be invoiced.
An efficient plant
In collaboration with Norilia, Himmerlandskød has in a very short time established the new, independent hide centre, which has met all xpectations. Søren Andersen explains the result; “We ourselves think that we have established an efficient plant that is operated by just 4 people. We are very satisfied with the solution for cooling. We also think that traceability is unique - we are one of the few companies that can provide traceability of hides.
To the question of how the project went, Søren answers; “We have reached the goal of the production part, which is running according to expectations. There was, of course, a short run-in period with various, expected adjustments, but we got through it relatively quickly. Scanvaegt/Accuratech has also been very flexible and has been good at being on standby around the clock to solve the challenges that have occurred. We have appreciated that - all small adjustments have been resolved”.
The solution from Scanvaegt includes:
- ScanPlant NG Manufacturing Execution Systems modules; Order Management, Integration Management, Process Management, Label Designer, Inventory Management and the Office suite.
- Overhead track scale no. 1 with SV10 weight indicator
- Overhead track scale no. 2 with IT6000E weight indicator
- 2 label printers in waterproof steel cabinet
- 2 pt9000 production terminals
Who is Norilia Nordic?
Norilia Nordic is a joint venture between Himmerlandskød A/S and Norilia AS, Norway. Norilia Nordic AS sells all hides for Himmerlandskød A/S and Norilia AS, Norway. Norilia AS is a subsidiary of the Nortura Group. Himmerlandskød A/S operates several slaughterhouses and cutting companies in Denmark.