Located in Hereford, Alfaplas Limited are specialist polyethylene, polypropylene, foil and paper printers. The company is part of the SP Metal Group, one of Europe’s leading manufacturers of household packaging products. The company wanted to improve their control of flying insects into the manufacturing plant and maintain a good working environment for their employees. On very rare occasions flying insects could contaminate the plastic film during production. However closing all the doors to the factory
restricted ventilation and daylight. Alfaplas approached Galebreaker Industrial who, as part of their range, supply systems consisting of screens and doors that provide weather protection while allowing the passage of light and the flow of fresh air.
A large proportion of Alfaplas’ output is the production and printing of mailing films and outers. Typically these could be the colour printed plastic carrier in which gardening catalogues are delivered. There cent purchase of a hot piercing machine has also expanded the business into one area of food wrap.
Alfaplas’ site has two main operating areas: production, where the plastic pellets are processed to make the film and the print area where the film is printed and finished. Both areas are kept to a high standard of cleanliness, which is important to the integrity of the finished product. One aspect of this is the control of flying insects into the building. However machines generate heat and operators, especially on warmer days, prefer to work with the large access doors open. Alfaplas’ Maintenance Manager, John Hodgson, was given the task of finding a solution. Working with Galebreaker he ordered two6m x5m roller doors. Each door was made to fit inside the existing metal sliding doors allowing sufficient clearance for the opening/closing of the outer doors. Dense brushes were fitted to the sides of both doors to ensure all-round protection thus sealing the opening to airborne insects. The doors are made from a very fine mesh with lateral wind bars that provide strength and reinforce the door within the side guide rails. The doors are raised and lowered by a motorized system. The mesh panels of the door are available
in a choice of colours and permeability. The mesh used for Alfaplas is grey with one-millimetre holes and is 25% permeable. This allows fresh but filtered air to flow in and creates a light, pleasant working environment. Galebreaker installed both doors in two days.
John Hodgson “Galebreaker have provided us with a low cost easy maintenance solution. Their installation team were very good, so much so that you would not have known that they had been on site. The system works very well, especially at night when the lights of the factory area draw to insects. Now the doors can be left open to allow the cool air in and nothing
Alfaplas continue to improve the products and services they offer. An expansion of the site is planned and all the time more
processes are being introduced. All sizes of packaging, thickness of film (from 15 to 150 microns), all colours and all kinds of closing methods can be made to order at the Herefordshire facility.