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ULMA Packaging UK’s ability to adapt its packaging machinery service offering to meet 2020’s pandemic-influenced working conditions has seen the company honoured for its support by a leading biscuit brand.

Chosen from 22 companies, ULMA was named ‘Engineering Service Provider 2020’ by Border Biscuits’ engineering department. A competitive award bestowed annually for excellent and consistent service levels, ULMA’s combining of remote support with its existing service offering saw it recognised in a competitive category.

Craig Penman, Engineering Manager at Border Biscuits commented: “During a time when it would have been quite understandable to cut back on support, ULMA did the opposite and made a huge commitment to service provision, and we hugely appreciate this. Whilst navigating the additional challenges posed by the pandemic, they provided extensive support in rapidly changing circumstances, which continually evolved to new forms such as online analysis and diagnostics. 

ULMA’s focus on remote support also included the implementation of video into packaging lines, which could be streamed to service teams. By providing video guidance and training that enabled on-site company staff to perform future maintenance work, Borders Biscuits could better protect against unplanned downtime without the need for in-person visits from ULMA technicians.

Alongside this remote support provision, ULMA’s services were judged against multiple award criteria. This included availability, effectiveness of service, added-value, professionalism and the company’s willingness to collaborate and innovate.

Iain Rae, Service Manager at ULMA Packaging UK said: “Typically, we would have a full, service team on a customer’s site twice per year with smaller teams available to commission equipment at other points. However, in 2020 we saw that more support was required due to renewed demand and unique circumstances, so the fact Borders Biscuits have thanked our efforts to adapt to this with an award is very welcome news.”

Border Biscuits have five ULMA packaging machines operating in their factory: the FR500 flow wrapper, four Atlanta flow wrappers and automatic case packing solutions. These are used to package the entirety of the biscuit providers’ retail offering, including their mini packs and range of chocolate bars. The machines offer a complete end-of-line solution with the use of innovative design solutions including multiple robot systems. 

“Since we started working with ULMA in 2014, they have become much more than a machine supplier and we now see them as a great business partner,” Craig concludes. “Over the last six years, this working relationship has only got stronger and ULMA have contributed greatly to our growth, even adapting their support to suit our COVID-19 protocols during this unprecedented year.”