A group of two people, Jelena Durkan and Johan von Heideken, have worked together on an assignment from the company August Lundh AB. The company manufactures plastic products for all sizes of catering establishments. The basis for this thesis is a pre-study which shows that many of the users would be more drawn to the plates that the company manufactures, if there was a motif on the plates.
This thesis will present the method of application for the motif that best benefits the company, with regard to the requirements placed on the motif, application method and the costs. The group found five relevant methods that were more carefully examined and compared to each other. Those are:
Laser engraving, Hot-stamping, Injection molding, In-mould labeling and Pad-printing.
The tools that have been used to solve this problem are: Requirement specification, QFD and OEE. A requirement specification was made to specify the requirements placed on the motif and the method of application, from both the company and the users. The most important requirement is that the motif must be FDA-approved after application, otherwise the plates may not come in contact with food and therefore not be used for their intended purpose. These requirements where the base for the technical requirements used in the QFD. The QFD was used to compare the methods of application to each other, with regards to technical and user requirements. OEE was used to calculate the production efficiency of the machines used for the different printing methods.
The group also did a study to be able to answer the following questions: How important is it that the motif is in color and which is the participants’ favorite motif of those presented to them by the members of the group? The participants also guessed what the price is for a plate without a motif and say how much they were willing to add to that price to buy a plate with a motif.
From the study the group could ascertain that most of the participants, 83 % (see 4.1 Undersökning), thought that a black and white motif is more appealing and ca 78 % of the participants were drawn to flowery motifs. The group could also see that the price that the participants were willing to pay and the actual price only differed 14 % for an undecorated plate and 6 % for a decorated plate.
Through the Requirement specification, QFD and the OEE calculations the group members could ascertain that laser engraving is the most suitable method of applying a motif for August Lund AB. When a motif is engraved on a plate through this method, it is immediately ready for use since the machine only burns the surface layer of the material and is therefore still FDAapproved. In addition the machine is infrequently used and increased use would result in a higher contribution margin. The method does not require any investment since it does not need any additional parts like robot arms, clichés and/or such. Because it does not need anything else but a new file to change the motif it is a very flexible method.
The group recommends that the company does a more extensive study with more participants and more motifs chosen by more people to get a bigger variety on the motifs. After a lot of discussions the group members concluded that the injection molding method might be a good method, but it requires more time and it also requires product development to make the method optimal.
2015. , 37 p.