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The fast-response service on which JBT’s tray sealing specialist Proseal has built its reputation is proving invaluable in enabling food customers globally to maintain production and output at a time of greatly increased demand, with the pandemic having placed immense pressure on food supply chains at a time when social distancing measures and absences from work are creating additional challenges on production lines.

Proseal continues to go above and beyond, doing its best to ensure that its existing industry-leading turnaround times are being maintained and to provide immediate help to customers to ensure machinery can run at peak optimum performance. The company’s in-house manufacturing teams are working flat out to meet the increased demand, liaising closely with the planning team to prioritise tasks dynamically throughout each day.

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This heightened manufacturing capacity has been made possible by the dedication of Proseal employees and the measures that have been put in place to ensure their health and safety in line with official protocols such as social distancing.

Spare part production and dispatch has been speeded up wherever possible and this has been aided by Proseal’s strategic stockholding of standard parts. Machine tooling production, which is normally completed within a two-week lead time, has also been accelerated; in several recent instances tooling has been designed, manufactured, tested and dispatched within a matter of days to meet customers’ emergency requirements.

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Equally important, Proseal continues to provide 24/7 phone support to diagnose and troubleshoot issues, providing a vital helpline to customer’s engineering teams. Allied to this, the company’s online and virtual Provision system helps to monitor downtime, OEE, and error management in order to proactively identify issues before they become problems.

For ongoing production matters, Proseal’s comprehensive Test Kitchen facilities also remain operational, enabling food companies to carry out shelf-life trials and seal integrity testing. As well as continuing to support new product development processes, the service can also assist companies having to adjust existing recipes, adopt new tray formats or materials to compensate for any shortages in their supply chains.

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The Test Kitchen has more than 15,000 trial plates in stock along with vast stores of trays and films in different materials. Testing facilities include a vacuum tank, gas cylinders for MAP and gas analysers. In addition, Proseal’s ProTest™ unit is able to measure how much force is required to peel a film lid from a tray, enabling the user to determine if the seal strength is suitable for the product’s lifecycle. 

To maintain safe working practices, tests are being carried out by the Test Kitchen team in isolation, with samples and reports sent back and forth between the customer and Proseal, rather than the customer coming to the Proseal site. “We have always recognised how essential it is for food companies to be able to maintain production and that is why we have continued to invest heavily in our range of support services,” explains Proseal’s Tony Burgess. “We are delighted that this investment means we have been able to provide the fastest response for customers during these very testing times.”

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