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Brammer helps Greggs get industrial mixer lift back up and running
As the UK’s leading bakery food-on-the-go retailer, Greggs, which produces products for its 1,700 shops fresh every day, machinery failure in food production facilities is simply not an option, and could result in loss of production and huge financial costs from a reduction in output. So, when a vital piece of equipment failed at one of the organisation’s key bakeries, action needed to be taken and quickly. As a leading gearbox distributor, Brammer was perfectly placed to rise to the challenge, sourcing replacement parts and ensuring the machinery was back up and running with minimal disruption.
With over 1,700 shops nationwide and nine regional bakeries strategically placed across the country, Greggs serves millions of customers each week. Headquartered in Newcastle-upon-Tyne and the home to one of its regional bakeries, the Gosforth-based facility supplies over 200 stores in the North. The loss of just a few hours could result in under production, meaning the facility would not have been able to fulfil its orders for the next day.
Greggs turned to Brammer for support after the gearbox in its industrial mixer lift – which was responsible for moving dough weighing between 60-70kg into the mixers – broke down. While workers could manually cut the dough and pass it up a ladder to be thrown into a hopper, this was an expensive option, therefore the only choice in order for the facility to work to its production schedule was to source a replacement component as soon as possible.
As the breakdown occurred in the early hours of Saturday morning, there were concerns over whether the bakery would be able to find a solution over the weekend. As Brammer operates 24/7 365 days a year, a member of staff was available that Saturday to progress the request straight away. Contacting a leading gearbox manufacturer, Brammer was able to source a replacement gearbox in record time. And, while the component wasn’t in stock, the manufacturer was able to construct the gearbox and transport it to the facility, before 2.30pm the same day.
The speed in which the part was delivered ensured production returned back to normal rapidly and relinquished the prospect that operations may have been impacted until the following Tuesday, when a new component could have been fitted. Impressed with the quick response, Greggs also ordered key steel products, which the team sourced and delivered the same afternoon.
Efficient production with minimal disruption is a necessity for any food production facility, but for Greggs which prides itself on its daily fresh approach to food, time is of the essence. Overall, the rapid response and replacement of the gearbox saved Greggs thousands of pounds – which included the additional labour costs that would have incurred for the loss in production time.
Stephen Young, Maintenance Manager at Greggs, explained: “We were delighted with the service Brammer provided, and the commitment the team demonstrated in ensuring the materials and parts we required arrived in a timely manner. Due to our 24 hour operations, we rely on our suppliers being able to support us over the weekend too, so the fact Brammer was able to deliver at very short notice on a Saturday afternoon was really impressive. This in turn meant there wasn’t a knock-on effect on job completion, which minimised our production downtime and ensured we didn’t incur any additional costs.”
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