Recopak Machinery

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Recopak Machinery
Recopak Machinery
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Recopak Machinery
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End-of-Line Packagers                

Recopak Machinery, based in Cobram, Victoria, was initially established in 1986 as a reconditioning and service company for the packaging machinery industry. As time progressed, however, this privately owned and managed company began to specialize in the design and manufacturing of end-of-the-line packaging and material handling systems. Recopak supplies machines for the food, beverage, household/personal care and petrochemical industries.  David Griffin, the Sales and Marketing Manager, has been with Recopak for about 13 years now. He says he came on board just as the company was looking to step up to the next level by also importing equipment. Now, the company is thriving and looking toward a future in the world of turnkey machinery production.

Investment Strategy

Griffin says that what sets Recopak apart from other manufacturing companies is their commitment to internal production. “We actually do most of the manufacturing processes internally, and we don’t outsource. We have our own water-jet cutting equipment, controlled milling machines, folding machines and all of our electrical work is done internally.” He says that absolutely everything is done in-house, whereas nowadays a great majority of similar manufacturers outsource to other companies in other countries. By continually investing back into the company with in-house production, Recopak is able to stay flexible, exercise greater control over the quality of their work, and guarantee shorter delivery times – all while keeping their prices competitive.

Employee Retention

Recopak employs highly skilled and qualified employees who can provide a complete service package from sales to design to installation, all the way to after-sales technical service and spare parts. Recopak accomplishes all of this, believe it or not, with just 22 employees. As Griffin says, most of these individuals have a technical knowledge base in the manufacturing industry. “Out of 22 people in the company, if you take out two of the office employees and one of the CAD designers, the rest of the company is really made up of experienced tradespeople. We’re not top-heavy as far as management goes, but we probably have about 17 trades people, which means we’re all hands-on.”

Griffin says that even the owner of the company is hands-on through the whole manufacturing process. “Basically, the owner is involved in the design work of the equipment, but he does the day-to-day jobs as well, so he is very hands-on with his management approach.”

Griffin says that employee retention is something Recopak takes very seriously.  “What we find is that there seems to be good tradespeople out there and once we get them working for us, we try to hold onto them.” This strategy of employee retention is important for a company with just over 20 employees. He has also noticed a change in the type of employees coming to work for the company. “There have been initiatives for people to have a lifestyle change here. A lot of people are coming out of the metropolitan areas looking for a lifestyle change in the country,” he says. Once they get these employees, the company works hard to keep them.

Industry Challenges

Griffin outlines a couple of industry challenges that Recopak faces on a daily basis: the first, he says, is meeting the customer’s demands for quality – because they work with major supermarket retailers, their products need to be shelf-ready. To keep up with that demand, Recopak has to stay at the cutting edge of always-evolving industry technology. The second challenge, he says, is the influx of overseas players coming into the game and buying up the Australian companies. Because of this, the market is becoming a little smaller by the day, says Griffin, so Recopak needs to work even harder to keep their customers happy.

Customer Service

Recopak prides itself on achieving a high level of customer satisfaction. “We’re dealing with a lot of your major Blue Chip companies, and if their production lines are down, they’re not very happy at the end of the day.” Griffin says that they ensure customer satisfaction by always being ready with a solution – they have the spare parts and the necessary backups in place to ensure their production lines are always running. Recopak’s approach is proactive, and that’s key in this market.

Machinery Spotlight

Recopak has a wide product range that includes case erectors, case sealers, semi automatic COP packers, fully automatic shrink wrappers, fully automatic load case packers, robotic top load case packers, intermittent/continuous motion wraparound case packers, palletizers, bag-n-box packers, and conveyor systems – just to name a few. And, just like their services, their machinery range is always expanding to suit the ever-changing needs of the industry.

Here are a few examples of their machines:

1. Wraparound Case Packers

They have a wide range of wraparound case packers, which consists of both intermittent and continuous motions, suitable for single or multilayer applications. This speeds range up to 60cpm. The complete ranges are designed to meet the customer’s requirements, offering maximum flexibility for different packaging types, formats and quick size changeover.

2. Fully Automatic Small Footprint Palletizing Cell

This palletizing cell features a unique, automatic pallet changeover system, which is comprised of a pallet conveyor that holds one empty pallet and a transfer conveyor to hold one loaded pallet. This unique space saving pallet system provides a one-in, one-out changeover that minimizes the demand on forklifts.

3. Recopak Semi-Automatic Case Over Product Packing Machinery OPP

Their case over packing machinery range offers a number of different packing options for all types of products, ranging from bottles, jars and cans to inner cartons and tubs. It automatically collates products into a desired configuration. The operator simply squares an RSC case, slides it over the collated product and the loaded case is then hot-melt or tape-sealed shut at the top and bottom.

Turnkey Future

Recopak is a company that has an eye on the coming years. “We’re seeing a future in supplying more turnkey lines, meaning complete lines from start to finish,” says Griffin. Recopak hopes to be involved in projects all the way from processing to palletizing, whereas in the past, they have typically only been involved with individual pieces of equipment. “Now, we’re trying to structure our company so we can come in and supply a complete, turnkey solution for our customers. They won’t have to do the sourcing of all the other components, because we will have aligned ourselves with overseas suppliers so that we can take care of everything.”

For example, with a bottling line, Recopak would supply the blow moulder, so they can blow the bottles. They would then package in whatever forms the client wanted, then palletize and stretch wrap. “We’re aiming for this to be our future growth, and we’re starting to do more of these turnkey projects already. In the past we hadn’t had all of the other components to complete an entire job, but we’re working on it, and of course, a turnkey supply will fill the gaps.”

With a pulse on the world of turnkey operations, Griffin says he’d also like to see the company expand their presence further into the Australian market. “In ten years, personally, I’d like to see representation in two other states – at least in Sydney, and possibly another state other than Victoria.”

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