Oldham-based packaging solutions provider Ribble Packaging have successfully completed a £3.5 million investment project on time, despite the challenges presented by Covid-19. The project, which included a warehouse extension and the installation of various state-of-the-art machinery, started in February and concluded in early September. The investment will allow Ribble to expand their capacity and continue their growth in the future.
Over the past 5 years, Ribble has worked hard to create a position as the European market leader for the manufacture and supply of corrugated Fanfold, in addition to pioneering Right Size packaging solutions in the UK. They started this journey to success 8 years ago when they prototyped the very first Fanfold stacker developed by Universal Corrugated B.V. Using this highly automated and ground-breaking technology, they were able to ride the growing wave of the ‘on-demand’ culture. It was Ribble’s desire to continue as the market leaders in this rapidly developing and evolving market that led to the decision to make this latest investment.
The investment consisted of 4 projects involving a multitude of contractors from all over Europe, all of whom came together with Ribble’s team to coordinate the installations. The teams worked seamlessly together in an environment made all the more challenging by the requirement to comply with Ribble’s comprehensive Covid risk management plan.
Project 1 – The ‘Airbond’ System
The system, installed by JKSP Services, was an investment on the drying section of Ribble’s conventional corrugator. It is designed to dry double-walled board at higher running speeds, allowing Ribble to increase the line speed of double-wall from 170 metres per minute up to 220 metres per minute.
Project 2 – The Unifold
The largest part of the investment was The Unifold, the latest generation and fastest fully automated fanfold stacker in Europe. This machine was manufactured by Universal Corrugated B.V, shipped over from the Netherlands and installed and commissioned within 2 weeks. The upgrade will allow Ribble to increase their running speed by 33% from 150 metres per minute to 200 metres per minute, with the capability for higher speeds in the future.
Project 3 – Dedicated Press Track
The press track, dedicated to The Unifold stacker, incorporates a state-of-the-art palletiser, turntable, pallet pusher and conveyorization. All of which will aid the manufacture and delivery of Fanfold to the various Right Size automated packaging systems available across the market.
Project 4 – Warehouse & Factory Extension
PLP Construction was contracted to build the warehouse extension, which has increased Ribble’s storage capacity by 18,000 square feet. This significant increase will allow them to store on average an extra 1000 pallets and cope with the newly increased running speeds of the Fanfold stacker.
Stephen Rector, the Managing Director of Ribble Packaging, praised his employees and the contractors involved stating; “The work done on this project has been immense and the result is, in my opinion, fantastic. The Fanfold and Right Size packaging market has grown significantly over the past few years and shows no signs of stopping. We, therefore, needed to evolve with the market to protect our hard-earned market-leading position. This investment will ensure we do exactly that whilst also giving us the ability to strengthen our relationships and partnerships with the leading Right Size packaging machine manufacturers such as Panotec, Quadient and CMC.”
Ribble Packaging based in Oldham and employs a 115 people. https://ribble-pack.co.uk/