Huhtamäki Foodservice Nordic

At Huhtamäki, Machine Track by Pinja performs several other tasks in addition to the usual efficiency monitoring.

Project in brief

A new system

The Maint by Pinja system was acquired to measure production efficiency and disruptions.


The system was harnessed to serve multiple uses.

Supporting decision-making

The data accumulated in the system serves decision-making and day-to-day

The benefits of the system in the spotlight

The plant’s efficiency has improved by eight percent in three years.

In addition to hygiene and traceability criteria, an increasing number of companies are wary of their reputation and the activities of their subcontractors. Carrying our social responsibility is one such criterion, and our customers can, if they wish, check that the taxes and other obligations of each person who has worked on the machine have been dealt with according to the law.

Anne Perävainio, Business Excellence Manager, Huhtamäki Food Service

8% increase in productivity in three years

more than 7 different functions in one system

The challenge: Production efficiency and disruptions highlighted by the system

Huhtamäki manufactures various packaging. At the Hämeenlinna facilities, the machines are hard at work manufacturing disposable tableware, such as cups, plates, and dishes. In addition to competitive pricing, the quality of the products is an essential factor. This means that the machines must produce them as quickly and reliably as possible.

Due to the lack of proper, measured data on production efficiency and disruptions, Machine Track was acquired for the plant. The Maint by Pinja system was acquired in the past.

The solution: Several tasks in one system

In Huhtamäki’s case, Machine Track performs several other tasks in addition to the usual efficiency monitoring. As the end-user of packaging is often the food industry, some customers want the operator of each machine to be reliably traceable later. Therefore, the system also acts as a personnel register.

In addition to personnel monitoring, quality checks carried out through Machine Track’s Ajonäyttö operating screen program include e.g. leak testing, seam and handle inspections, foreign object inspections, and various safety and cleanliness inspections. These inspection events were previously recorded on separate inspection forms, which were archived. Now they are recorded directly by the program to the Machine Track database, from where they can be retrieved easily and quickly if they are needed in a quality audit, for example.

Huhtamäki has been able to connect several functions to Machine Track. “Our goal is that the production staff does not have to manage or use other software”, says Business Excellence Manager Anne Perävainio.

For example, work orders related to manufacturing recipes come directly from the program. They show the raw materials and settings of the machine, and no separate work steps are required, either from the work management or the operators. The operating screens are also tailored to be as simple as possible, so that they don’t confuse the operator with irrelevant information or questions.

It is evident that Maint and Machine Track are tied together and support each other. A production alarm is immediately logged as waiting, and when the installer accepts the job, it enters repair status. When the repair is complete, the malfunction is recorded as a cause, which is registered according to the frequency of the faults, thus providing a list of the most persistent problems to be eliminated, with the issue causing the most headache being on the top.

An important henchman for decision-making

Perävainio says that managing the plant’s operations using clear numbers is paramount to long-term development. When malfunctioning machines or other production parts can be presented in numbers – hours, material waste, kilowatt-hours, and finally in euros – investment proposals materialize. For example, the cost of manually affixing a special sticker becomes an actual figure in euros per unit instead of an estimate.

Often, technical and financial management arguments differ, and there is no common ground behind decisions. On the other hand, when decisions are based on numbers, the debate can easily be built on productivity and usability, as well as amortization times and capacity gains.

No hidden faults

As a short-term achievement, Perävainio says that efficient monitoring prevents information flow interruptions and hidden faults. In the past, it could happen that a simple information flow interruption prevented a machine from being used. For example, the fault may already have been rectified, but the operators still thought that parts were inbound.

It is also crucial for operation and maintenance that the difference between a fault and a feature has become apparent. One quickly perceives that a part of a machine that becomes stuck often is a feature of the machine. When it is listed in the fault report, it can easily be identified as a fault.

“Over the past three years, we have improved the efficiency of our plant by eight percent. Maint and Machine Track are an essential part of the ongoing development with which we want to increase the usability and overall utilization of our machines. In such development, we need to consistently increase the amount of information we can get from machines and basic functions” Perävainio says.

Huhtamäki Foodservice Nordic in a nutshell

100+ Years in business

30+ Countries

74 Production plants

260+ Employees

68,8 M Revenue (2019)

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