My third week in Fresno, California gave me some better insights into the processes that go on in our factory here. Fresno has one of the Ready To Drink (RTD) plants in Kraft Heinz’s network, featuring Capri Sun, Kool Aid Jammers, and Kool Aid Bursts brands of RTD beverages as its main outputs. (Fresno is also home to the Corn Nuts factory, a little further up the street.)
My Yellow Belt Project has a focus on Flat Pouch loss in the Capri Sun lines, meaning the pouches that we produce that don’t make it into the fillers to be filled with juice and packaged. My two biggest resources have been the data on the plant’s quality database (tracking pounds of waste at both the pouch makers and the fillers) and the operators at the fillers. After talking with the filler operators and doing some research, I decided to conduct a study at the filling machines and have the operators separate the pouches they normally throw away into three categories: bent/crushed pouches (which cause issues when being loaded into the machine), defective pouches, and pouches that get loaded into the filler but end up not making it into a pocket on the machine to get filled. I’ve gotten some good data so far, and hope that this analysis will help lead me to a root cause for the issues we are experiencing. It is also helpful having a former trainee at the plant to give me some guidance and to bounce ideas off of.
The city of Fresno is a bit different (read: hotter) than my hometown of Cleveland, Ohio, but it has been great to be able to explore a new area. Last Saturday, I made the trek up to Yosemite to check out the National Park there, and the sights were incredible. I also have plans to check out the major cities nearby, the San Francisco area up north, and the LA area down south, in order to get the full California experience. Hopefully next time you hear from me, I’ll know how to surf!
KETCHUP with us next week as we drill down into our projects!