Confectionery & Snacks

Compact and flexible picker line with options for the future

At Bahlsen, a high-performance picker line supports the packaging process of filled biscuits.

The biscuits can be placed either into plastic trays or individually onto a grouping belt.

A total of 24 pick & place robots work in four of the six TLM frames.

After filling, the trays are turned lengthwise

Requirements

High-performance packaging of biscuits in a variety of formats

At Bahlsen, the compact packaging line is adapted to suit the nuances of the packing hall

Even a building post in the middle of the hall is not a problem for a Schubert machine: At biscuit manufacturer Bahlsen in Poland, the pillar was simply integrated into the new flexible picker line. Now the TLM system packs the “Keks’n Cream” product line at high output in a minimum of space.

Bahlsen offers its customers the latest variation of its well-known Leibniz butter biscuits, “Keks’n Cream”: two classic biscuits with a delicious chocolate cream filling. “Keks’n Cream Milk” is the name of the version made with dark chocolate biscuits and milk cream. The new product family’s filled double biscuits are placed into a tray, which is packed into a resealable shell. This allows them to remain fresh even after the packaging has been opened.

In order to meet the high demand, Bahlsen invested in a new picker line at its Polish site in Krakow. For the most part, the German market is supplied from this location. Due to the challenging architecture of the production hall with a free-standing building pillar, the packaging line had to be specially adapted. At the same time, a compact, high-performance solution was required. It was especially important for Bahlsen to be able to run other tray sizes in the future too. In addition to an excellent quality control, low maintenance and low spare parts costs needed to be ensured.

Solution

How does the solution meet the requirement?

High robot density on a short line

To achieve high performance in a small space, Schubert placed a total of 24 pick & place robots in four TLM frames. The post was simply integrated into the slightly extended machine. 12 robots work on each side of the line. The biscuits are picked up by the robots and placed into trays on the left and right of the line. Alternatively, the biscuits can also be placed onto a single placement conveyor. From there they are packed into flowpacks without trays. The robots, which can be switched individually between tray and single placement, make format changeover particularly flexible and enable scope for further future formats.

Potential for further formats and more performance

Four 3D scanners ensure that only intact double biscuits are placed inside the packaging. An appropriately adapted 3D scanner program is used for the dark biscuits. The new system runs at a slightly lower cycle output rate in order to reduce wear. This forward-looking planning offers potential for the future. There is still room for performance to be increased without taking the robots to their output limit.

At a glance

  • High performance with low wear
  • Extremely variable packaging formats
  • Reliable quality control

Added value

“In April 2019, the machine was already running with a level of efficiency which had only been planned for December.”

Technical Details

Flexibility and performance potential thanks to high robot density

The picker line at Bahlsen consists of a total of six TLM frames. 24 pick & place robots work in four of them. They are arranged in pairs one behind the other so that 12 F4 robots are available on each side of the line. The plastic trays are also fed into the system on both sides. Two F3 robots remove seven trays at a time from the magazines and place them into the carriers of the two inclined chain conveyors. The biscuits are picked up by the F4 robots and placed vertically into the trays. The inclined position of the trays prevents the biscuits from tilting after being placed into the tray. Quality control is performed by four 3D scanners. Products containing no filling or less than the specified amount of filling, as well as those not clearly bearing the Leibniz lettering, are rejected. After filling, the trays are rotated through 90 degrees so that they can be discharged lengthwise from the picker line to the subsequent flow-wrapping machine. At the push of a button, individual placement of the biscuits onto a grouping belt for flow-wrap bag packing without plastic trays can be activated at the same time. The number of robots that change from placing into trays to single placement is variable.

Overall performance
  • Compact machine with 24 robots
  • Packs of 6 to 14
  • Deposit into trays and on single placement conveyor
  • 3D scanner for quality control

More Case Studies

Confectionery & Snacks

A flow-wrapping machine as an integrated solution for packaging biscuits

Read more

Confectionery & Snacks

Fruit gum burgers, efficiently assembled and packaged

Read more

Confectionery & Snacks

Wide variety of formats with limited hall space

Read more

Confectionery & Snacks

Careful packaging of Puff Pastry Products and Sponge Fingers

Read more

Confectionery & Snacks

Reliable identification and space-saving packing in the optimal formation

Read more

Food

Packaging Cantuccini bags into boxes

Read more

Confectionery & Snacks

Packing of snacks in flowpacks into cartons

Read more

Confectionery & Snacks

Packaging a wide variety of baked goods into thin plastic trays

Read more

Confectionery & Snacks

Packing of Almond Thins into plastic trays

Read more

Confectionery & Snacks

High-performance packaging of biscuits in a variety of formats

Read more

Confectionery & Snacks

Packaging biscuits with or without chocolate bases into trays

Read more

Turnkey

Packaging puffed rice chocolate snacks

Read more

Confectionery & Snacks

Fully automatic assembly of praline assortments and packing them into boxes

Read more