Palletbooster at Boermarke
Boermarke, you will probably know them. The company from Twente that is characterized by its delicious ice cream, custard, yogurt, mousse, porridge, quark and fruit products.
When you’re that big you actually have to automate, which is why we were allowed to implement our Palletbooster in their process. The Palletbooster in combination with the Universal Robots UR10e on elevator is the ideal composition for this application. The custom gripper makes it possible to handle different amounts of packaging.
In addition to the Palletbooster, we also supplied the feeding belts and plano holder. This allows the line to be used completely without personnel.
What was the main reason to start automating?
This is a continuous process with few changes of format and patterns with a relatively low capacity, so to employ an operator here is relatively expensive compared to a cobot. In addition, the cobot makes no mistakes and always stacks the pallet neatly and correctly. So combination of labor costs and neat stacking.
Why did you start automating with a cobot and not, for example, with an industrial robot?
At this location with relatively light packaging, the cobot seemed very suitable, also because of the space and the lack of shielding. In addition, we are considering using more cobots and this first relatively simple solution gives us the opportunity to gain experience. The big plus in my opinion is the very simple operation of the cobot, practically nothing can go wrong and the basic, start-up and program selection is easy to learn by new employees.
How does the staff react to automation? For example, are they afraid they will lose their jobs or take on other tasks?
Not at all, they just ask for more solutions because they see that certain things can be done more efficiently.
What might you guys want to automate with cobots in the future?
Still various application for end of line palletizing and possibly setting up/packing boxes.
What does it give you now?
In the first place it saves us some labor, but I think the most important thing is the experience with cobots so that we can determine where else we can use them.