Egemin Automation has completed the construction of Laboratoria Smeets’ new production unit in Antwerp. Egemin was responsible for both the civil construction work as the engineering, procurement, construction and qualification of the installation. The new plant with a new production installation and the far-reaching automation, increased Laboratoria Smeets’ production capacity by one third, with which they will quickly recoup the investment of nearly three million euro.
Laboratoria Smeets bought an existing production installation from a well-known pharmaceutical company, then had Egemin move it and subsequently re-engineer and equip it in the newly refurbished building. Laboratoria Smeets manufactures powders for the pharmaceutical sector which are then packaged into finished products for the pharma industry. Laboratoria Smeets also develops and produces nutritional supplements.
INNOVATION AND AUTOMATION
Egemin added quite a number of innovations and improvements to the installation and automated them as much as possible. In addition, special attention was paid to as ergonomic as possible working conditions for the employees. The maintenance costs have now also been reduced by various preventive measures. There is also immediate access to the information for batch documentation and traceability through a central data monitoring system.
BIG CHALLENGE FOR MORE PRODUCTION CAPACITY
"The expansion of our product offering was the motivation for this project," says Jef Verplaetse, Managing Director of Laboratoria Smeets. "One challenge was the complexity of the new production unit. The installation consists of six parts: a storage silo, a weighing unit, a chemical reactor, a mixer-dryer, a solvent regeneration system with refrigeration and finally a packaging line. We have thus significantly improved our competitiveness and it is certainly not the end of our expansion plans. We want to be twice as large within the next three years. Recent commercial successes guarantee our further growth scenario. So, no doubt we will be doing similar projects with Egemin."