Automated dosing system installed at Valio’s juice factory

The Dosetec dosing system included big bag unloading stations, small component stations, a precision dosing feeder and a bag unloading station with a sack paler.

Valio is the largest company in the Finnish food industry in terms of turnover. Valio wants to succeed together with its customers by offering consumers well-being every day. Investments into a new dosing system were planned at Valio´s juice factory in Helsinki since late 2002. The order was placed with Dosetec in May 2004 and the system start up was in the autumn of that year.

The Dosetec dosing system included big bag unloading stations, small component stations, a precision dosing feeder and a sack unloading station with a sack paler. Dosing is done by vacuum conveying into hopper scale. Dosing from the big bags is done on the basis of the weight of the hopper scale, whereas the dosing of small components is based on storage bin weight. Detrimental dust in the environment is controlled with a dust extraction system and a sack folding station. The system as a whole is controlled with a Siemens S7-300 logic controller.

Timo Kähönen, who is responsible for maintenance, discusses the Dosetec system: “We compared various equipment and automation suppliers and ended up choosing the Dosetec system.´The choice was affected by several criteria, including:

  • the fact that Dosetec was a known supplier
  • the fact that Dosetec had made similar deliveries, e.g. to Valio and Saarioinen, which we went to see
  • the use of the Siemens S7 control system, which was well suited to the process.”

“Dosetec has been a joy to use”

“The manoeuvring of heavy raw material bags and the handling of powder, which requires a high level of accuracy, became wholly automated, which freed up some human resources for more pleasant jobs. Ergonomics improved significantly and we got rid of the dust caused by powder handling. The dosing is now accurate to the nearest millilitre, which will bring us important savings in the future. The fact that we can acquire raw materials in big bags (FIBC) is also economical.

The system´s technology has contributed to improving the quality of our fruit soups, and the production process as a whole has become faster, while we have been able to minimise errors and wastage. All parts of the delivery, from the planning service to the user training, have worked excellently. Furthermore, the delivery schedule was perfect, as the equipment was installed on exactly the agreed date,” Kähönen says with pleasure.