29/10/15 Updated 26/03/19

I&J plant re-design with Marel maximizes value

When I&J decided to completely renew its on-shore hake processing operations, it brought Marel on board to translate its vision into reality and take the thriving, successful business to the next level.

Working in partnership with Marel to secure the newest technology and best equipment, I&J constituted an expert team to review its plant design, equipment, processes, and systems from scratch. Their last major renovations were also with Marel in the late 1990s, and in 2012 many elements of their processing systems dated back to that time.

The I&J team during a visit prior to the installation
The I&J team during a visit to Marel HQ in Iceland prior to the installation; with Marel's Kristmann Kristmannsson (Project Consultant, Iceland) & Marel South Africa team members Andre Nieuwoudt, Ivan Procter & Paul Mulder.

The project culminated in the entire I&J factory in Cape Town undergoing a complete overhaul in the beginning of 2013. This was completed in just two weeks to minimize the impact of downtime on production. Marel was the largest contractor on the project, as well as being responsible for designing and commissioning the new plant.

“This was a complex and multi-disciplinary project involving a number of different suppliers,” says Ivan Procter, Head of Regional Sales for Marel in Africa and the Middle East. “It involved precision planning and superb logistics management, and this was expertly managed by joint project managers from I&J and Marel.”

Making Every Tasty Bite of Cape Hake Count

I&J decided to strip out almost all its whitefish processing equipment, and replace it with the complete processing solution from Marel including cooling, a gentle handling in-feed system, trimming line, PortionCutter, TargetBatcher, and Innova software modules for yield control, trimming, and packing.

I&J have now been using Marel’s new systems and equipment for two years. After grading, automated equipment is programmed to select from a range of processing options depending on fish size. This enables production managers to maximize both fillet utilization against portion size and significantly improve product quality.

Product processing time has been reduced between the filleting machine and the freezer. This not only improves plant efficiency but significantly improves the quality of the product.

From a business point of view, I&J can now maximize the value from every fish fillet, delivering improved quality and packing flexibility in the process., Ivan Procter, Head of Regional Sales for Marel in Africa and the Middle East -

“For any wet food processing business, quality, yield, and profitability are the three cornerstones of success. And we’re proud to have been part of securing such significant improvements in all these areas for I&J,” Procter concludes.