Taylor Farms New Jersey

Taylor Farms New Jersey

Amy D'Alonzo, Director Quality, CI and Analytics
Taylor Farms New Jersey
Swedesboro, NJ
Industry: Food Processing

Business Challenge

Taylor Farms New Jersey ships 50 million salads, fruit cups, hoagies and wraps per year. In 2019, the plant lost a significant portion of its revenue due to the redistribution of its portfolio. This impacted the bottom line. The challenge was to break even. This was exacerbated with the spread of COVID-19, which resulted in a negative impact on labor and declining demand.

Analytics Solution

The Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control (DMAIC) approach was implemented to define opportunities. Analysis of data would be futile, as data was not workable due to flawed data collection processes. The challenge was to develop a training program that trains floor operations leaders on a real-time digital production system to document daily operations. The challenge was compounded by an 800-employee workforce spread over multiple teams and 13 languages.

The approach led to the following outcomes:

  • Training was personalized and issues with data tools were rectified.
  • Reporting latency was improved by automating manual data processes. IoT and other applications were identified to expand data collection.
    • Redzone Digital Production System was implemented to provide real-time analytical insights to operations leaders.
    • Data collection between quality and operations departments was consolidated.
    • Loma Trending-Reporting-Analysis-Capture-Software was implemented to centralize checkweigher reporting.
  • Reporting was visualized through Tableau, and data-driven communication was developed through weekly meetings between executives and floor leaders.

Impact

Despite losing revenue and operating when COVID infections were closing food processing plants across the country, the facility not only beat its goal of breaking even but closed out with a profit.

The following outcomes were realized:

  • 21% overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) improvement from 2020 Q1 to 2021 Q1.
  • Data-driven improvements led to the best picking audit of the year.
  • Availability of production KPIs moved from a one-week lag to real-time.
  • Associates’ engagement with and understanding of operational metrics improved.
  • A standard for material and productivity data management was identified and will be implemented at another Taylor plant.