UK brewer saves 80,000 a year by cutting stock damage with simple forklift attachment

One of Britain's leading brewers has been able to completely eliminate what had become an extremely costly stock damage problem by fitting Jayline Products' innovative load cushions to the gas-powered counterbalanced forklifts that it operates throughout its production and warehouse facilities. The company, which is part of a group that produces and markets some of the UK's most popular beers and ciders, had been experiencing significant damage issues for a number of years.

The problem centred around the damage caused to palletised loads of aluminium cans of drink as they were taken by the forklifts from the production site to the adjacent warehouse. Quite simply, the impact of the load against the fork carriage as the truck's forks entered the pallet was often sufficient to ruin at least one can in every load.

If a can's interior lacquer finish became cracked during the handling process, the acidic nature of its contents would soon 'eat through' the can causing it to leak. And, because beers and ciders are corrosive in nature, just one damaged can would often be sufficient to spoil the entire load.  Furthermore, if any leakage was not spotted before the load was put away within the racking, liquid would drip down on to the pallets stored below causing further damage.

It was also not unusual for a spoiled pallet load to go undetected within the warehouse and be delivered to a client often a large grocery retailer. Not surprisingly, this resulted in customer satisfaction issues and the significant extra expense of collecting the rejected load from the customer's site. On the advice of its aluminium can supplier, the brewer had tried to remedy the problem by fitting a specially designed 'roller' device to the mast carriage of its forklifts. However, this had little or no effect and, typically, losses from stock damage were running at in excess of 80,000  a year. A Google search for a solution drew the brewer's attention to the Jayline load protector range.

Made in the UK from heavy duty moulded rubber, Jayline's Patented load protectors fit to the rear face of a forklift truck's forks and absorb the impact of an incoming load. They provide a cushioned barrier between the load and the back of the forks and, as the pallet is picked up, the protector prevents the load from hitting the truck's forks or the fork carriage with sufficient force to cause damage to the load.

Initially the load protectors were fitted to trucks operating within the production area. Damages were immediately reduced to zero and so the protectors were rolled out across the entire fleet including trucks employed within the warehouse that are used to load some 25 articulated lorries that leave the site each day. Damage within the warehouse and during the goods-out process has now also been eradicated. Available in a choice of sizes to fit 4" (105mm), 5" (130mm), 6" (160mm) and 8" (200mm) forks, the Jayline protectors are suitable for use with a wide rage of materials handling equipment, including counterbalanced and warehouse trucks. The load protectors are quickly fitted using a simple yet robust strapping system and their slim profile means that a fork truck's load handling capacity is not compromised by their use.

Peter Kimberley, sales and marketing director of Jayline Products, comments: "No company that is experiencing stock damage caused by lift trucks picking up palletised loads can afford to overlook the kind of savings that our load protectors offer. In this leading brewer's case, the investment has resulted in annual savings of at least 80,00 per year  in reduced stock losses, while  the damage to the company's image and reputation caused by quantities of spoiled goods arriving at a retailer's site cannot be quantified."

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