A leading vegetable seeds producer with international operations needed a highly accurate weigher to pack their product. The company invests a substantial part of its annual revenue in research and can take more than a decade to bring a new variety successfully to market. Accurate weighing is a vital part of the packing operation because the company mostly sells its seeds, being high value items, by number in the pack rather than by weight. The seeds present additional weighing challenges because each of the more than 1,000 different varieties of seeds differs in its characteristics.
The Micro combination weigher provides accuracy to within 0.03g on a 2g pack, with speeds of up to 75 packs per minute.
Ishida’s Micro multihead weigher (50cc hopper size) is able to handle extremely small target weights with pinpoint accuracy made it the ideal choice for the seed producer. The company also uses Ishida’s larger multihead weighers for its larger pack sizes.
» Pack weights are from 2g to 80g, representing anywhere from 250 to 25,000 seeds depending on the variety.
» The Micro weigher provides accuracy to within 0.03g on a 2g pack, with speeds of up to 75 packs per minute.
» The CCW multihead weighers are achieving accuracy of within 0.1% of target weight at speeds of 30 bags per minute.
The Ishida weighers are set at a target weight that matches the number of seeds per pack, which vary for each seed batch. For the Ishida Micro weighers, pack weights are from 2g to 80g, which can represent 250 to 25,000 seeds depending on the variety. To ensure the correct number of seeds in every pack, the accuracy of each weighment is vital. The company reports that accuracy is to within 0.03g on a 2g pack, with speeds of up to 75 packs per minute.
For its larger bag sizes up to 1.5kg, the company uses two Ishida CCW multihead weighers. Again, excellent accuracy–to within 0.1% of target weight–is being achieved at speeds of 30 bags per minute (this is limited by manual packing of the bags into cartons). The company is currently installing a robotic pick-and-place system for this operation, increasing the potential speed of the line to 50 bags per minute.
The huge number of seed varieties means there can be up to 20 changeovers per day on each weigher. Using vacuum cleaning and compressed air and with the settings for each production run pre-set and easily called up on the weighers’ remote control unit, these changeovers can be carried out easily and in only 10 minutes.
The reliable and accurate performance of their Ishida weighers has sustained the company’s long-standing relationship with Ishida, one which has withstood the challenges of rival equipment.
“When we installed the new lines for the larger bags, we (tried) alternative weighers,” says the logistics team leader, “However, their performance simply wasn’t (satisfactory;) this demonstrated the capabilities of the Ishida models.”
The company also uses Ishida checkweighers throughout its operations. “Like the multiheads, the Ishida checkweighers are consistently reliable and accurate,” explains the logistics team leader.