Leeds Vacuum Formers (LVF) has invested £600,000 in a Kiefel KMD 78 Speedformer – a move that will lead to the creation of three new jobs, increase manufacturing capacity by 25 per cent, and open up opportunities in new markets for the Leeds-based thermoformed packaging company.
The new markets, which include fruit punnets and drinking cup lids, have been made accessible as LVF’s new Kiefel KMD 78 is a four station machine that features an extra cutting press, which enables holes to be punched in products prior to those products being cut out.
Nigel Coates, managing director of LVF, said: “The fourth station means this is a big machine as well as a big investment. However, it will start paying for itself from day one, as we’re able to reduce production time and cost by automating the hole punching operation on existing products.”
“In the medium term we hope to make sizeable gains in new markets, especially the takeaway drinks market with a fully recyclable and biodegradable rPET lid – a product we are aiming to bring to market in early 2020.”
The three new jobs LVF will create will all be factory floor roles, and the company anticipates recruiting for the first of them in early Autumn.
LVF manufactures food, drink, gift and shelf-ready packaging for businesses ranging from major supermarkets to fish processors, specialist health food producers to leading distillers. Earlier this year it became one of the first packaging companies in the UK to manufacture and sell products made from Breakdown PET – a biodegradable and fully recyclable plastic material that is designed to quickly, naturally and safely decompose in landfill.
“The demonization of plastic packaging is extreme, but like the vast majority in our industry, we’ve been striving towards delivering environmentally friendly solutions for many, many years. We recycle close to 100 per cent of all waste and have done so for as long as I remember, and not only do the materials that we use contain up to 80% post-consumer waste they themselves fully recyclable “
“I think this latest investment is an indication of our long term confidence in our industry and what we do “ said Coates in conclusion.