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Seward increases UK manufacturing capacity

By Joe Whitworth+

09-Apr-2014
Last updated on 09-Apr-2014 at 17:44 GMT

Seward ramps up Stomacher bag manufacturing
Seward ramps up Stomacher bag manufacturing

Seward has increased production capacity for Stomacher blender bags with additional manufacturing in the UK.

The firm said based on a Q1 comparison 2013 to 2014 for the Stomacher bags made in UK (the standard type bags in the 400ml and 3500ml range) it saw a 43% increase in production.

The manufacturer of Stomacher paddle blenders and accessories which are used in sample preparation for microbiological analysis, is targeting the ISO 14001 environmental management standard by mid-2014.

By manufacturing its Stomacher 400 and 3500mL bags at its UK facility, Seward has reduced delivery lead times for its European customers and minimised its environmental footprint.

Seward supplies Stomacher products through local bag manufacture and stocking from regional sites in USA and Singapore.

Cost control and sourcing points

Dan Crothers, general manager at Seward, said production is between the UK and the Far East to minimise costs for customers but keep good quality standards.

“The background is around cost controls and the rising material and fuel costs for transporting goods and shipments to the Miami office and our logistics hub in Singapore,” he told FoodQualityNews.com.

Crothers said offices in Miami and Singapore helped reduce lead times for customers.

“With Australian customers, they used to have to wait up to six weeks but with Singapore now it is within a week,” he said.

“It is a two-fold thing, from the customers’ point of view cost control is vital and for labs the crucial element is the cost per test. We previously supplied the APAC markets from the UK but it was difficult to understand the market and the opportunities.

“With the sales and logistics points in Singapore, we can get face to face and see what is going on to better serve them and the key issues they were facing.”     

All Seward machine products are manufactured in the UK and one of its three Stomacher bag manufacturing operations is also UK-based.

Environmental aim

Seward also revealed its environmental policy to minimise material and energy wastage and promote the use of recyclable and renewable materials.

It hopes to achieve the ISO 14001 environmental management standard by mid-2014.

Since starting manufacturing Stomacher bags in the UK, Seward is recycling 85% of all its plastic and cardboard material production waste, contributing to a 40% reduction in general company waste.

Crothers said the firm was keen to talk to customers who have similar environmental policies and interest in collaborating to reduce the environmental impact of laboratory testing.

“For the labs it is about the cost per test versus the environmental impact,” he said.

“For any bio-based or biodegradable solution it needs to conform to the original requirements and be cost-affordable.”

Seward’s Stomacher bag range fulfills applications from sample blending, straining and storage, including bags designed for extensive blending (processes requiring more than 15 minutes on the machine) and small samples for life science applications.

Made from food grade virgin LDPE granule extruded to 65µm film thickness, Stomacher blender bags withstand extensive blending without tears or perforations.

All Stomacher blender bags are irradiated sterile and a certificate is available for all bag products upon request. 

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