Carib Cement introduces modern palletiser systemWednesday, March 04, 2020
Caribbean Cement Company (Carib Cement) recently introduced a modern palletising machine to its Rockfort plant to reduce manual packing.
The company says that the addition of the machine, which automatically stacks cases of goods or products onto a pallet, is part of ongoing modernisation and transformation of the plant.
Yago Castro, general manager of Carib Cement, said that the palletiser, which was commissioned within schedule by a team led by Christopher Bryan, the company's projects manager, is the most advanced machine available in the market, and has already brought efficiency and improvement to the packing process.
“Our production capacity, as of today, with only this new palletizer, is now more than 100 per cent of the total Jamaican market. We are able to, right now before installing the second palletiser, comfortably supply the whole Jamaican market. The implementation of the second palletiser will take us to a next level — maybe soon we can begin exporting to other countries,” he said.
Minister of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries Audley Shaw, who was at the inauguration and addressed the commissioning event held on Februaury 10 said that the machine was necessary for such an important industry in Jamaica.
“I am happy to see that Carib Cement is stepping up investment in the construction sector. We salute this new initiative and we thank Carib Cement for putting in the levels of investment you have been putting in,” Shaw said.
The minister said that with close to 200 workers involved in the production of clinker at the factory alone, makes Carib Cement very important to the Jamaican economy, and commended the company for stepping up its investment in the construction sector.
“I just want to say, as we salute this new piece of technology, thanks to the Cement Company for putting in the levels of investment that you have put in,” he added while noting that Carib Cement has invested over US$50 million over three years, and close to $250 million to get the project going.
He said that he was proud that Carib Cement is improving its capacity, which will enable it to target the export industry.
“Let us not forget that, for far too long, we have not been exporting to the Caribbean. It is time to turn things around, so that there are more Jamaican products in the 15-member Caricom Single Market and Economy (CSME),” Shaw stated.
He urged the company and its employees to “keep up the good work”, and to remember that, in the pursuit of excellence, one company could make a huge difference.
The Ventomatic Polimat palletiser, is described by makers, FLSmidth, a Danish engineering company based in Copenhagen, as a state-of-the-art product. It is one of two new packing equipment acquired by Carib Cement and while one machine is already up and running, the company says that commissioning of the second machine is already underway.
Carib Cement has been undertaking major capital expenditure (CAPEX) projects over the past three years. This includes the installation of new equipment, repairing or upgrading of others and a major demolition exercise, which saw defunct equipment removed from the plant after decades of having been decommissioned.
“We have invested at least US$50 million in the last three years, and we have a five-year multi-year investment plan, which will see US$10 million invested in CAPEX per year. We will continue to invest what is necessary to meet the needs of the market, develop our local talent and invest in the right CAPEX in order to make Carib Cement the best plant in the whole Caribbean,” Castro said.
Caribbean Cement Company is the largest manufacturing company in Jamaica and a member of global building materials company CEMEX. Between 2015 and 2018 $7.2 billion has been invested in Carib Cement by CEMEX.
The palletiser replaces manually placing boxes on pallets, which can be time consuming and expensive as well as put unusual stress on workers.
Carib Cement is a manufacturer of Ordinary Portland, Composite, and Blended cement to the specification.