Customer story

ValueSpray at Tillman’s

01 May 2013

When asked about the first thing that to comes to mind when thinking of the ValueSpray, Plant Manager Patrick Borkowski and Production Manager David de Camp of Tillman’s don’t have to think twice. “Precision!”

Tillman’s is the ‘convenience brand’ of Tönnies, one of the largest meat processors in Germany. Since early 2012, Tillman’s has been using two ValueSprays on a number of different lines within their Seasons department.

Season production

“In the seasons department we produce all sorts of typical season products like marinated grill steaks, mostly for winter holidays and the barbecue season”, Borkowski explains. “Batches are relatively small and there is a lot of variation in the products. Therefore this part of the plant obviously needs to be very flexible and adaptable”.


This is were the ValueSpray comes in.

“With its small footprint, it’s very easy to exchange”, De Camp adds. “We can take it out of production in no time, which makes the changeover of recipes easy. It’s just a matter of taking it out, cleaning, changing recipes and marinade and putting it back in. Then we do a couple of test runs to get the settings exactly right, and we’re off!”

Exact settings

The right settings are crucial to both the production process and the product itself. “The ValueSpray runs much cleaner than conventional marinating systems. Those can make a real mess”, De Camp explains.

Less give-away

But there’s another major advantage to the ValueSpray’s precision. “The dosing on the products is much better than with e.g. dippers. Result is better marinade coverage of products, but also less give-away. Not just of marinade but also, and more importantly, of meat”, Borkowski elaborates. “You see, because the ValueSpray is so precise, we can set the dosing values within very strict limits. Meaning that if the weight ratio of meat and marinade should be e.g. 90 – 10 %, the ValueSpray will add almost exactly 10%. With dippers it could be 15%, or only 5%, there’s a lot of variety”.

Manual or inline

“Right now we’re using the ValueSpray as a standalone system for marinating pan fried backs”, De Camp continues. “We have set it up next to a Scanvaegt B55 (now called I-Cut 55), which is a manual system. Also, right behind the ValueSpray packaging is done by hand at the moment.


The two ValueSprays at Tillman’s are among the first that were built by Marel. This is a clear example of the partnership between Tönnies and Marel, Borkowski says. “Marel in Germany contacted us at a very early stage about the ValueSpray being developed. When they showed it to us, we were very interested in the concept. So when the first machines were ready to be put to the test in a real production environment, Marel installed two 0-series machines here. We’ve been using them ever since”.

State of the art

There is more Marel equipment on Tönnies’ production floors. “Oh yes, we have a lot of Marel here, there’s Marel packing units, freezers, OptiCuts, there’s our Scanvaegt and Townsend machinery. And not to forget the other Marel marinating system, the ValueDrum. We use that one in a continuous, inline process for marinating gyros, ”, Borkowski adds.

Tillman’s Convenience GmbH

Tillman’s is located at the main Tönnies facility in Rheda, Germany.

The location is like a small city in its own, with a restaurant, shop and even its own football stadium. Of Tönnies 8,500 employees, 1,700 work at Tillman’s, producing a range of convenience meat products .

With a yearly production of 200.000 tons and a turnover of 1 bn, Tillman’s is a major European supplier.