A global metal detector rapid-delivery scheme could minimise food production line downtime-associated costs and safety concerns often found with long-lead delivery times.
The YES! programme, which has been launched by food safety solutions provider Thermo-Fisher Scientific, can ensure the delivery of APEX metal detectors to North America-based customers in less than 48 hours.
European customers can expect delivery within a week – compared to the industry average of four to six weeks.
More than 40 APEX metal detectors are currently available for dispatch to address time-critical issues such as equipment failure, food recalls, customer audits or production line disruptions.
Under the scheme, the price of metal detection systems varies depending on specifications, but there is no premium for delivery.
“The YES! programme can enhance and ensure the safety of food coming off the production line and leaving the plant,” said Thermo-Fisher metal detection and x-ray inspection lead project manager Bob Ries.
“That’s the main purpose of using x-ray or metal detectors – to make sure the food on a production line is safe.”
“Typically, it is very difficult to get hold of a metal detector without a long lead time,” he added.
An increasing number of retailers are demanding additional food safety assurances, including the adoption of metal detection technology, to ensure that food products destined for their store shelves are not contaminated with foreign objects such as metal fragments.
The program can facilitate these demands, and minimise the impact of production line shutdowns, said Ries.
“In this industry, if a production line is down because you are in need of a metal detector, you’re losing money,” he added.
In these circumstances, food processors would previously have purchase a used system or borrow one from a different manufacturing line or facility.
“The lead time for places such as Europe is usually three, four or five weeks. But with the YES! programme we can reach them within a week or so.”
“Food processors do not have the luxury of waiting several weeks to receive equipment to address a foreign object contamination issue. When a problem presents itself, it is critical that a solution be found immediately. As a result, we’ve established YES!, the first global rapid response program for metal detectors.”
“In today’s cost-sensitive manufacturing environment, food processors cannot afford any unplanned production disruptions. Downtime not only negatively affects productivity, it also affects business relationships with those further down the supply chain,” Ries concluded.