Ilapak helps Fox's out of crunch situation

When one of biscuit manufacturer Fox’s high speed flow wrappers failed, Ilapak came to the rescue, supplying an exhibition model Delta Systems & Automation (DSA) Eagle flow wrapper with the capacity to handle 1,000 biscuits per minute.

Fox’s Rocky brand is a UK household name. To keep supermarket shelves stocked, the manufacturer has four lines operating 24/7 at speeds of 600 bars per minute at its factory in Kirkham, Lancashire.

With some equipment nearing the end of its lifespan, Fox’s visited Interpack in 2017 to research upgrade options and was impressed with Ilapak’s US-built DSA Eagle flow wrapper.

Featuring automatic splicing and expanded touchscreen diagnostics, the DSA Eagle’s heavy duty construction and feeding system design are key to its exceptional performance at high speeds. It also deploys advanced sensor technology to perform a profile check of each biscuit just before it enters the flow wrapper, ensuring uniformity.

Before Fox’s had a chance to resume discussions with Ilapak, one of its high speed flow wrappers broke down and due to obsolescence, couldn’t be fixed. With throughput down by 40%, Fox’s Chief Engineer Paul Nolan contacted Ilapak to see if Fox’s could buy the model he had seen at Interpack.

At the time, the flow wrapper was being shipped back across the Atlantic, but arrangements were made to return it to the UK as soon as possible and transport it to Kirkham. Installing it on the line was far from straightforward, as it had to be interfaced with upstream and downstream equipment that was operating on different and older control platforms. But by December, the line was back up and running with the new flow wrapper in place.

“I value Ilapak’s openness, their readiness to provide solutions and the partnership we have. The pace at which Ilapak moved and their willingness to help us out was admirable,” says Paul.

Fox’s is now looking at upgrading its other flow wrappers to DSA Eagle systems as well as future-proofing the rest of its plant.


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