Cimcorp, manufacturer and integrator of turnkey robotic handling solutions, is providing a robotic dolly picking system for Olvi Brewery at its headquarters in Iisalmi, in Finland.
Olvi distributes beers, ciders, soft drinks, energy drinks, and bottled water directly from this location to retailers all over Finland.
The Cimcorp solution includes gantry robots for handling the dolly picking, as well as software that controls the material flow after production, from the high-bay warehouse to the loading docks for order fulfilment.
Olvi’s previous order-picking solution by Cimcorp has been modified to handle kegs, designed to store beverages like beer, cider or long drinks, and beverage trays.
Cimcorp has also provided the necessary software modifications for controlling the keg gripper.
Olvi Brewery’s customer service and administration director, Marjatta Rissanen, said, “30-litre kegs are hard to handle because of their size and weight. Previously, kegs were picked manually and added to customer-specific pallets.
“During the summer season, the number of kegs picked each day increases dramatically, due to heightened demand. The new keg gripper will not only help optimise handling during peak times of the year, but also make it safer for our employees and get products to our customers faster,” added Rissanen.
The partnership between Olvi and Cimcorp dates back to 2005, when the Finnish brewery first invested in its initial automated order-picking system.
The long-standing partnership helped in the development of the keg gripper.
“We struggled with handling kegs for a few years. Suddenly, our technical manager realised that Cimcorp has a gripper that handles tyres. Tyres are heavy and round, just like our kegs,” Rissanen added. “It seemed like a natural fit.”
The modified keg gripper was customised in the spring of 2018, just in time for the peak season in summer.
Pekka Kääriäinen, technical manager in Olvi Brewery, said, “Despite the tight schedule, the implementation was excellent. The equipment has worked well from the beginning.”
'More Like Partners'
Founded in 1878, Olvi Brewery is celebrating its 140th anniversary this year. The company has always been a trailblazer in revolutionising many traditions in the Finnish brewing industry.
“We constantly try to stay ahead of the curve, be agile, and react quickly to any changes in trends. It might be why we are still around,” Kääriäinen added.
“Our work culture is very innovative, and it is part of our culture to always think differently and find new and better ways of doing things.”
Cimcorp’s vice-president of sales, Kai Tuomisaari, said, “Both of these orders confirm that our long-time customers value our solutions and trust us.
“How our relationship has evolved is an indication of this mutual trust. We like to think that we are more like partners, rather than having a conventional customer-supplier relationship,” Tuomisaari added.
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