General Mills, the owners of brands including Jus-Rol, Green Giant, Häagen-Dazs and Yoplait, is applauding the support it has received from Smurfit Kappa West Auckland in improving its packing line efficiency over the last six months, which was instrumental in the Berwick site winning the General Mills International Continuous Improvement Champion of the Year Award.
Smurfit Kappa provides a unique level of customer assistance through its provision of technical packaging and machinery optimisation support. At General Mills Berwick, Smurfit Kappa assisted with carton erector efficiency, which led to a reduction in downtime in the packaging area. Smurfit Kappa Machine Systems also carried out a comprehensive survey to target the improvement areas both parties could focus on. Smurfit Kappa Technical Manager, Alan Newby, received a certificate in recognition of his outstanding performance throughout the process.
David Cormack, Manufacturing Development Manager for General Mills, Berwick commented: “This work, which was relatively painless for us to undertake, was important in showing our production team the things we needed to address in-house, that were limiting the performance levels we are now achieving, independently of packaging quality.
”He continues: “In short, when we look back on the history of the relationship, the turning point for us came when we started to adopt a more collaborative approach on both sides. We’ve actually started to follow the model of the way we worked with Smurfit Kappa with several other suppliers on a variety of issues and have had immediate success.”
Marcus Jeffery, General Mills Account Manager at Smurfit Kappa West Auckland comments: “Our efficiency improvements have had a huge impact on General Mills’ main line 1. I think they will agree that this wouldn’t have been possible was it not for a very successful joint collaboration, made easier due to the strong working relationship we’ve built up with General Mills over a number of years.
”Marcus adds: “With the unique offering of additional support systems and technical advice that Smurfit Kappa provides, we can help our customers sell more.”