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Innovative robot-assisted packaging line for confectionery manufacturer

 

The team at Schubert’s subsidiary in Charlotte, North Carolina, together with the technology team in Germany, developed an innovative robot-assisted packaging line for the “Sweet Candy Company”, a leading confectionery manufacturer in the USA.

 

The company wanted better production efficiency in the packaging process for its fruit jelly-filled chocolate sticks. As the branded product is sold in its packaging by weight, but the individual products vary slightly in weight, Sweet’s needed a packaging solution that could flexibly adjust the number of products per box.

 

The chocolate bars filled with different fruit jellies from Sweet Candy Company are placed in a box by an F4 robot from Schubert.

 

Packing by weight with a pick-and-place machine

Schubert therefore opted for a fully automatic picker line with 16 F4 robots equipped with a vision system. In addition to detecting the position of the products, this system also performs quality control. The packaging contains two product layers, between which a wax paper is inserted. A unique feature of this system is that the number of products per box can be adjusted spontaneously. The adjustment is triggered by the weight of the packaging. The number of products can be set manually on the machine’s user interface.

 

The new picker line with sixteen F4 robots from Schubert enables the confectionery manufacturer to achieve the required increase in production efficiency.

 

Fully automatic packaging instead of manual labor

The new packaging process is fully automated: the chocolate sticks are fed to the packaging machine by a cooling tunnel conveyor. Here, they are pre-grouped into layers of 15 to 17 pieces by the 16 F4 robots. At the same time, the previously erected cartons are fed into a transport chain, where an F4 robot fills them with the first pre-grouped product layer. Further F4 robots then carry out the following steps in sequence: Placing the prepared wax paper on the first layer, inserting the second product layer and finally placing a carton lid.

 

Unique: The “spontaneous” change in the number of products, which can be made during production by making a manual entry on the dashboard.

The erected carton bases contain a wax paper, which is placed on top of the first layer, executed by a F4 robot.

 

About Gerhard Schubert GmbH

Gerhard Schubert GmbH is a globally recognized market leader in top-loading packaging machines (TLM). For its digital, robot-based packaging machines, the family-owned company based in Crailsheim (Baden-Württemberg, Germany) builds on an interplay of simple mechanics, intelligent control technology and high modularity. With this philosophy and a highly developed culture of innovation, the company has been pursuing an entirely independent technological path for more than 50 years.

With its TLM technology, the machine manufacturer provides its customers with future-proof packaging machine solutions that are easy to operate, flexible in terms of format conversion, high-performance and stable in function. The TLM packaging machines pack products of all types and from all sectors – from food, confectionery, beverages, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics to technical products – in trays, cartons, boxes or in flow-wrap bags.

Well-known brands such as Ferrero, Nestlé, Unilever, Mondelez and Roche rely on Schubert’s automation solutions, as do numerous small, medium-sized and family-owned companies. Founded in 1966, the second generation of the company now employs 1,600 people.

Gerhard Schubert GmbH Verpackungsmaschinen
Industriegebiet Südost
Hofäckerstraße 7 – 74564 Crailsheim
Tel.: +49 7951 400-0
email: info@gerhard-schubert.de
www.schubert.group 

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