Focus on Waste Boosts Wilsanco's Bottom-line

The company, which produces high quality plastic tubs, pots and other containers for the food industry, is implementing a ‘Waste Watch’ programme with assistance from Invest Northern Ireland.

Since the start of the programme in April, Wilsanco has reduced rework levels, mostly plastics, converted in its manufacturing process by 3.2 tonnes. The savings followed a detailed analysis of its production operations and the areas generating waste.

Jerome Kerr, Wilsanco’s factory manager, said: “Reducing all waste is an integral part of our continuous improvement programme that’s geared to enhance our ability to win new business and to continue to grow profitably in a fiercely competitive plastics packaging marketplace.

“Our customers in the food industry, particularly in dairy products, are facing pressure from retailers demanding quality products at ever cheaper prices and this impacts on packaging suppliers like ourselves. Our continuous improvement programme is designed to maintain intense downward pressure on costs.

“Guidance and assistance from Invest NI for our drive to ensure consistently high quality products at lower costs to meet customer requirements has been invaluable,” he added.

Peter McCarron, Invest NI Business Improvement executive, said: “Wilsanco is an excellent example of an independent business that is strengthening its ability to compete in all its markets through the development of a company-wide culture of continuous improvement and ongoing investment in its people, processes, products and customer service.

“This approach has already enabled the company to achieve internationally recognised standards such as BS EN ISO 9001 and BRC Hygiene Accreditation. In addition, we’ve been able to help them with a benchmarking survey and a quality management study through our Competitive Assessment programme,” he added.

Notes to Editors

Invest NI’s Business Improvement Services commissioned Manufacturing Technology Partnership (MTP), the Belfast consultancy, to assist Wilsanco in developing the improvement programme.

Wilsanco Plastics now employs over 180 people in its plant at Killyman Road Industrial Estate, where it manufactures a broad range of packaging products for the food industry. In addition to the manufacture of containers, the company offers a full graphic design service for pot and lid decoration using various dry-offset printing techniques.