Production line observations, studies and evaluations for any beverage category usually focus on several prime factors: equipment capability, machinery speeds and capacities, productive time maximization, and packaging configurations. All factors are important; however, the one issue that contributes most frequently to constant change syndrome (CCS) is packaging configurations.
Competitive marketing demands for new SKUs and changes in packaging are becoming more frequent and complex placing a burden on existing capabilities and creating the need for line modifications or replacements. Historically, the packaging situation on beverage packaged production lines has presented a real time challenge for engineers and manufacturers by requiring redesign in machinery, equipment and methods to accommodate proposed SKUs or new products. How does this relate to depalletizers and palletizers in the current production environment? From an operations perspective, it is a major challenge because containers (bottles and cans) and cases (packs) with frequently changing sizes, shapes and make-ups must go through both these operations on most beverage lines.