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Just the Cheese

Known for producing luxury cheeses, Anthony Rowcliffe and Sons Ltd. turns to LOMA SYSTEMS® award-winning IQ3 metal detection technology to support Artisan cheeses for retail giant, Marks and Spencer.

Anthony Rowcliffe and Son Ltd., one of the most established cheese and speciality chilled food suppliers in the UK have selected LOMA SYSTEMS, world leaders in metal detection, checkweighing and  x-ray inspection systems, to install a state-of-the art IQ3 metal detector system for their new range of 11 Artisan cheeses for retail giant, Marks and Spencer.

The company was started 42 years ago in Peckham, London and have now successfully grown, operating out of two purpose-built BRC accredited sites at Paddock Wood in Kent, supplying over 1,000 different lines, including its own branded Clemency Hall product. The two sites operate five days per week with a same day delivery policy to a variety of major supermarkets. A combination of their product integrity and dedicated, skilled staff has enabled them to achieve an annual turnover of £40 million, selling to diverse markets including delis, farm shops, butchers and the premium multiples.

Anthony Rowcliffe and Son Ltd. prides itself on not only being able to provide quality cheeses, but also having a depth of knowledge and experience within the field. This allows them to consistently source new products and bring them to market both technically and logistically on time.

Anthony Rowcliffe is renowned for their luxury products, so maintaining their excellent reputation is key to their brand. The company is constantly striving to ensure the highest quality standards and as part of this drive they inspect every product meticulously prior to despatch, so the next generation IQ3 metal detector from LOMA SYSTEMS was an obvious solution for the company.

All of Anthony Rowcliffe cheeses are individually hand-cut with wire, so it was vital that LOMA® could provide a metal detector system that was sensitive enough to identify the smallest metal contaminants. As the company despatches and inspects products in trays, LOMA specified a carriage track reject conveyor, designed to push reject trays down a separate conveyor system to ensure trays with contaminated product are kept separate from trays that have been inspected and found to be safe.

Anthony Rowcliffe complies with the industry standard RFID tracking system to ensure their products are tracked throughout the delivery process to guarantee they arrive at specific locations through their identifiable metal tags. These metal RFID tags can cause significant problems when going through other brands of metal detectors. The RFID tags give off a signal which could be misinterpreted that the products have metal contaminants and could ultimately cause a false reject.

LOMA’s innovative true variable frequency IQ3 metal detector system provided Anthony Rowcliffe with the ideal solution. LOMA’s true variable frequency means the system can learn the signal given off by the metal tags and then eliminate that signal to only find contaminants that are actually in the products.

The machine is able to automatically calibrate to the variety of cheeses on six cutting lines. Every cheese emits a different product reading, varying in moisture levels, salt content as well as density and size. Therefore, frequency levels also vary enormously. With its class-leading product memory offering space for 200 different products and frequency levels of between 31 and 882 kHz, the versatility of the IQ3 technology provided a reliable solution for Anthony Rowcliffe.

The system’s automatic product learn function ensures maximum sensitivity and accuracy without constant operator adjustment, resulting in one machine handling all six lines as opposed to buying
multiple machines to cope with various differing products. This saved Anthony Rowcliffe a significant amount of money compared to purchasing several lesser quality metal detectors.

Jason Fisher, Head of Operations for Anthony Rowcliffe comments, “We chose LOMA SYSTEMS due to the whole package they offered, including their knowledge, testing processes, quality product and pricing. We have a great relationship with LOMA and it has been a pleasure to work with a company who is as quality driven as ourselves. The technology is excellent and the true variable frequency IQ3 metal detector is invaluable to our operations.”

The IQ3 metal detector system complies with LOMAs outstanding ‘designed to survive’ ethos; it comes standard with the tough IP69K search head environmental protection and is highly reliable. The machine is extremely easy to use, making it more simple for operators to achieve maximum functionality.

Kathy Pattenden, Cutting Room Supervisor comments, “Operating the IQ3 metal detector on a daily basis has proved effortless. Having met our standards and adhered to our customers’ strict codes of practice, the IQ3 metal detector has recognisably increased production efficiency.”

Anthony Rowcliffe also took advantage of LOMA’s Platinum Service Contract to ensure sustained production levels and for peace of mind that should a problem occur they can receive expert support quickly and efficiently. Jason continues, “We have not used this service so far as we have had no problems, but it is good to have this safety net should any problems ever occur.”