Cooperation between Valio and Delfoi bears fruit
Valio Ltd has used Delfoi’s simulation and production development competence for several years now. Implemented projects have pertained to new plant projects, investment planning, productional efficiency increase as well as productivity improvement. To summarise:
- Changes implemented brought significant, measured improvements compliant with the simulation.
- All projects carried out with Delfoi have been successful and the customer has benefitted from the vast experience of Delfoi in the field of production development.
- In addition to simulation analyses and recommendations, Valio uses simulation models in production planning and execution optimisation.
Confirm investments through simulation!
When planning the new powder plant in Lapinlahti, the operations of tomorrow’s production plant were studied to the detail as early on as the preliminary planning stage.
“Simulation was used to find the right equipment solution, and a visual plant model facilitated discussion among the planning team as we were able to quickly examine various aspects. We even performed year-long simulation runs at the virtual plant, which allowed us to see the behaviour of the planned plant in different productional situations,” says Antero Ylitalo from the Lapinlahti plant.
Capacity increase through production planning and execution optimisation!
At the Joensuu plant, the efficiency of capacity use at the cheese manufacture saltery was improved by finding optimal batch size and product variations while taking into account the limitations of existing equipment. “Having several products in production means that salting durations vary to a great extent and finding the right production mix is very challenging. There is a number of variables at play and it is easy to lose much of the saltery capacity with an unsuited product mix. We were able to find the right solution through simulation, and we still validate our production plans in a simulator before taking them into production,” reports Ilkka Tirronen from the Joensuu plant.
In Joensuu, simulation has also been used when planning new investments.
“Delfoi has strong competence in plant simulation and solid knowledge of productional regularities. The application of the Lean doctrine is the trend of the day, and being able to test a theory without disturbing production is the key,” states Tirronen. Jouko Myllymäki from the Seinäjoki plant agrees.
40% reduction in product stock!
At the Seinäjoki fresh product plant, production volumes have undergone a great increase, and at the same time, a number of new products have entered the market. As a result, the shipping warehouse of the fresh product plant started to experience problems with excessive stocks and measures needed to be taken. The starting point was to find a solution involving measures that would enable a better productional flow so that the warehousing problems could be shaken off without compromising efficiency. A warehouse expansion investment was not found to be a sensible option although seemed likely at first. Pinning down the problem, applying the Lean doctrine and testing theory through simulation finally resulted in a solution.
“It was rather incredible to see how such relatively minor changes brought about such great change. We suddenly had extra room in our warehouse!” says Myllymäki. After the adoption of the new rules, the stock levels of the fresh product warehouse suddenly dropped by 40%. Myllymäki reminds, however, that the company’s own input in development projects is highly essential. “Consultants cannot do magic by themselves. Delfoi knows simulation and productional matters but the company must bring in its own knowledge of its products and processes, otherwise it would be impossible to succeed."
Valio Ltd is a company owned by Finnish dairy farmers that secures milk production in Finland and the vitality of the nation's countryside by processing milk into tasty products that promote health and well-being. The turnover of Valio is EUR 1.9 billion and the company employs approximately 4,360 people. Valio is the market leader in dairy products in Finland and an international pioneer in nutrition and taste. Quality, expertise and responsibility have served as Valio's guidelines for more than a century. In the Finnish market, the Valio logo is a guarantee of a dairy product produced from Finnish milk. Product safety is secured at every stage of the chain from farms to stores. Valio saves the environment by using recyclable package materials and reusable pallets.
More information: Valio Ltd