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Detector helps increase productivity at Whitby Seafoods

Published: 14 November 2012 - Heather Ramsden

Following installation of a Vertex Metal Detector from specialist, Fortress Technology seafood company, Whitby Seafoods, based in North Yorkshire, has announced a 30 per cent increase in its productivity.

Patrick Thomas, projects co-ordinator at Whitby Seafoods says:  “The Fortress machine runs like a dream and has revolutionised our packaging and control processes, and it has paid for itself already.”

He explains: “The metal detector we used previously worked by scanning the packed product rather than inspecting it loose as the Vertex does.  This caused us difficulties as the packaging medium is foil, so if there was a slight difference in any of the packs such as a thicker seam or seal, the machine recognised it as contaminant, resulting in lots of false rejects.  With the Vertex there are far fewer rejects. This has allowed us to increase throughput by an estimated 30 per cent and we’ve improved quality standards for our customers.”

Currently inspecting up to 2,000kg per hour of sea food products, a figure that is set to increase in the near future to between 2,500 and 3,000 kilos, the Vertex is situated between a multihead weigher and vertical form fill seal machine for inspection of free-falling product.  This positioning offers Whitby Seafoods significant space saving benefits.  

The detector is easy to maintain and more hygienic to use than its predecessor since there are no moving parts and less dirt trap points to clean.

The previous metal detector also required dozens of different programme settings, whereas there is only one setting required for the Vertex, plus it doesn’t need to be calibrated after every use like the old machine.

“One of the reasons we opted for a Fortress system is because the company comes highly recommended by suppliers and its metal detectors are considered to be the best in the industry by many food producers,” commented Mr Thomas.

“After just one day’s training all of our operatives came away fully confident that they could use the Vertex competently, and we’ve had no requirement to retrain.  They all love it and the service from Fortress is absolutely brilliant.  We will only use them from now on,” he concludes.

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