Donnerstag, 02.01.2020, 11:00 Uhr
500,000 Euro for the main plant in Türkismühle
A kitchen is not a T-shirt. Rather, it should be like a tailor-made suit that is tailored like a second skin to the respective living conditions. Individualisation at all levels - that's what Schmidt Küchen und Wohnwelten has set itself the goal. Like a designer of haute couture, the traditional German-French company designs, creates and constructs interior furnishing solutions that are accurate to the millimetre. The high proportion of special sizes also calls for optimisation in the highly complex manufacturing process. The German-French Schmidt Groupe has now carried out such a process with an investment of half a million euros at its headquarters in the Saarland turquoise mill.
On the one hand, Europe's fifth-largest kitchen manufacturer enlarged, modernised and made more accessible the approximately 2,500 square metre parking area for the truck trailers and containers opposite the administration building at the end of November. On the other hand, a carton cutting machine was put into operation for the investment costs of around 250,000 euros. The task of this high-tech system with the somewhat unwieldy name "Homag Automation Paqteq C-250" is to cut the cardboard boxes needed for packing furniture, fronts, drawers or pedestals quickly and easily. And the machine does this with millimetre precision and in the right order.
Each carton is now produced in batch size one - it is a tailor-made suit made of cardboard. "The new machine cuts, perforates and creases perfectly adapted packages with the best product protection. We now produce exactly the cardboard boxes we need: in optimum shape, with high volume utilization, with low waste and at minimum unit costs," explains project manager Thomas Scheid.
This investment is a further strengthening of the Türkismühle site. Last year, a new conveyor system was already installed for half a million euros, which increases the process chain and material flow within the plant. A great benefit of the new acquisition now: The packaging process is radically simplified. For special sizes, the standard cardboard boxes previously had to be laboriously and laboriously modeled by hand with a cutter knife.
"Due to the accurate cutting, there is no need for any adjustments. It is also no longer necessary to pick the stock goods, because the resource-saving machine cuts in exactly the same order as the parts have to be packed," says production manager Christian Sendler. Another advantage: the quality of the packaging has improved significantly. On the one hand, the appearance is visibly enhanced, which is certainly more appropriate for the high-quality contents. On the other hand, the protection of the furniture during transport to the end customer has increased - which in turn minimizes transport damage.
The need for packaging and filling materials has also been reduced. And the storage and logistics costs have also been drastically reduced. "We even freed up a complete warehouse at the plant, which we can now use for other purposes," explains Thomas Scheid. Most recently, more than 120 different packaging references were stored there, which it now no longer needs. This variety was necessary because there is an increasing demand for made-to-measure kitchen and living room furniture.
In total, 700 finished kitchens leave the Schmidt Groupe's state-of-the-art furniture factories every day. They are produced in top quality. The same standards are expected in the packaging and logistics chain. Just as buying off-the-peg kitchens has long since become a thing of the past, so too are prefabricated standard packaging. The Schmidt Groupe, which is managed by Anne Leitzgen in the third generation, manufactures mainly in France - one plant is located in Lièpvre, three in Sélestat and one in Bergheim, which, however, is used exclusively for order picking. In addition, there is the German parent company in Türkismühle, which operates in a production network. Schmidt has a total production area of around 223,000 square metres. Each year, 1,766 employees produce over one million furniture elements for kitchens and living areas.