Quick action needed when the spiral freezer's drive broke down
Goodlife Foods makes spring rolls ceaselessly, in all sorts and sizes and exports these to many countries in Europe. A flawless production process is a prerequisite.
Goodlife Foods seated in Katwijk makes a lot of spring rolls in all sorts and sizes and exports these solidly frozen to many countries in Europe. In the Netherlands too, the popular snacks are in great demand. Under brand name Beckers – also known from other snacks – they massively find their way to snack bars, and – under private label – also to supermarkets like Lidl.
Spring rolls and SEW-EURODRIVE
What do Goodlife Foods spring rolls and electric motors and gearboxes from SEW-EURODRIVE have in common? Nothing at first glance. However, when the spiral freezer in which the spring rolls are frozen, suddenly came to a standstill due to a defective drive, SEW came to the fore.
Passion for food
Jan Schoneveld is head of the technical service department at Goodlife Foods, formerly Izico Food Group, and has been working for the company for 28 years now. "GoodLife stands for passion for food, being a good employer, for health (less salt, no palm oil...), green, open atmosphere. The people here have been employees for than 20 years on average now, so that’s a significant sign, I would say."
Katwijkers still know the company by the name of duif snacks. It’s like this. Back in the sixties Piet Duivenvoorde had a snack bar in Noordwijk. He was inspired by the spring rolls served by Chinese restaurants. He started making them himself and gradually also supplied his fellow snack bars. The quantities kept growing until folding spring rolls manually was no longer an option. Machines set in. Nowadays the company is producing more than the breathtaking number of 650,000 spring roll snacks per day... varying from 20 g to 220 g in five varieties: vegetarian, chicken, ham, beef and pork, mixed with bean sprouts, carrot, onion, cabbage, leek, all freshly supplied, blanched, sliced and internally processed.
It’s a completely automatic process and here too SEW-EURODRIVE is involved. SEW takes care – besides other drive suppliers (fair ‘s fair) – of the conveyor belts moving in the spring roll factory and, more recently, of the drive of one of the two spiral freezers (rpm: 0.69 rotation per minute) in which the spring rolls, after being baked, turn into a frozen state in an hour and a half.
The filling is wrapped in dough. The batter of this dough is made centrally and pumped through pipes to the processing rooms. Here the batter is baked on drum ovens into round or rectangular crêpes. Through conveyor belts, the filling is laid on the thin crêpes, which are then folded completely automatically by means of ingeniously positioned and movable tabs, bends, rakes and rollers.
The spiral freezer’s smooth operation is crucial for maintaining the quality of the spring rolls and for the production progress. In the spiral towers having 37 layers air circulates in an ambient temperature of -30 °C. The spring rolls are cooled here in 1.5 hours from + 40 ° to -18 °C. Subsequently they are meticulously scanned for any metal particles and for shape/size and then wrapped.
The strain was considerable when the worm wheel gearbox (a non-SEW product by the way) suddenly broke down and caused the spiral freezer to abruptly come a halt. It appeared that it could not be repaired and so a new drive had to be ordered urgently.
Quote from Jan Schoneveld, head of technical service department
We knew that SEW-EURODRIVE is able to supply new drives quickly. We received a quotation for an industrial gear box, type X3KA200/HU/B, a mounted helical gear unit, type RF107 and an energy efficient IE3 motor,
type DRN132M4/TF/AL, with calculations and a delivery time of only four weeks. We could handle that. We went to work and manufactured a new, appropriate foundation plate and prepared a by-pass to the other spiral freezer in order to allow production to continue."
Jan Schoneveld: "Together with our logistic service provider Royal Saan our own technical servicemen mounted the new gear box. For this industrial move a crane had to be arranged to lift the freezer tower and to position the SEW gear box on the foundation. The planning required precision: On 28 April the gear box arrived, on 30 April it was assembled and on May 1 it was in operation again. At the same time, the frame was adjusted and sensors placed to prevent the system from breaking down again. After all we are talking about a torque of 100,000 Nm...".
Goodlife Foods is higher level IFS (International Food Standard) certified, i.e. 97 to 100% of food safety processes are flawless. Each spring rolls batch can be identified within 4 hours and can be traced down to the day and time of production.
Second spiral freezer also SEW driven?
The reconstruction went off smoothly and satisfactorily. During the next winter break, the second spiral freezer will be overhauled as well. Of course SEW is hoping to get the request to also supply the drive for this tower.
Meanwhile we have invited four GoodLife Foods mechanics for a free workshop named Drive engineer in one day at our headquarters in Rotterdam. They’ll get a lot of practical background information on mounting positions from a seasoned SEW service technician who gathered a lot of experience in the field.