Innovation is a key part of our strategy at K.Hartwall and developing new and exciting products to meet the future need of this fast-moving market is essential for us to maintain our position as the leading supplier of goods carrier equipment. Innovation however does not always need to be about new products and materials but can also be about how we incrementally improve existing products to enhance performance.
When Arla UK were looking at new milk roll cages to build on their existing fleet in 2020, they wanted first to know if there were any improvements that could be made to their existing design. Specifically, Arla were concerned about a particular part of the product that comes under higher than expected loading which can lead to fatigue damage to the cage over time.
The first part of this improvement process is identifying where failure was occurring and why. Thankfully Arla retain very good repair information and this enabled them to understand exactly the part of the product that needed improvement and why the failure was occurring.
Once the type of damage was understood, K.Hartwall were able to review the product design using its 3D CAD modelling software and look at options to improve the strength. Those design options are then analysed, using our FMEA modelling software, so that the impact of the new design can be clearly understood. The final part of the new design stage was to produce physical samples in our prototyping workshop so that the design could be tested by Arla to ensure 100% compatibility with existing equipment and machinery.
By working closely with Arla and using our CAD and modelling software, the process of designing and testing product improvements was completed within two weeks enabling these changes to be incorporated into the latest products in production.
These incremental improvements mean our customers costs will reduce, production efficiency will improve. Our customer’s success is our success.