Is it possible to exceed the expectations of a customer?
Sergio Ciocchetta, addresses this question while speaking about the long collaboration between MBF and Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery. He explains how the ability to handle customer challenges is fundamental in keeping or regaining a customer.
Sergio Ciocchetta, North America Area Manager for MBF addresses this question
MBF, a worldwide leader in the field of design and production of bottling systems, has been operating in Veronella, Italy since 1997. From concept to production, MBF has made significant contributions to the growth and evolution of the bottling industry all over the world. In 2002 began the collaborating between MBF and Ferrari-Carano:1500 acres and 19 estates, two production facilities, two different winemaking teams and growing success that is confirmed by widespread distribution throughout North America and much of the world.
The first bottling line: the Monoblock.
The winery needed the supply of a bottling line and the MBF Monoblock provided a very innovative solution; a single machine with flexible design, able to accommodate their present configuration, while also being flexible enough to change for future configurations. The Monoblock for Ferrari-Carano was configured with filler and corker to ensure a production capacity of approximately 100 bottles per minute.
In 2004, Ferrari-Carano requested integration of a screw capper into the Monoblock: the screw cap came with the promise of perfect conservation of wine for New World winemakers. Sergio Ciocchetta, North America Area Manager for MBF explains: “The request to integrate a screw capper into the Monoblock gave MBF a direct chance to test the modularity of our machine. We simply opened the frame and integrated the screw capper between the filler and the corker.”
Finding solutions to new challenges
The biggest difference between a corking and capping closure system is the greater free volume that the screw cap leaves above the wine. Greater headspace means more air, thus more contact with oxygen. Bottles being closed with screw caps must therefore be perfectly sparged with inert gas in the headspace. MBF provided Ferrari-Carano with a machine equipped with an inertization system, and also decided to reduce the headspace by increasing the fill level of the bottles. “We discovered that this operation, in itself trivial at mechanical level, determines some problems in fluid dynamics:in practice it slowed down the filling and increased the capability to exchange with the surrounding atmosphere. This led to a performance decrease of the Monoblock” continues Ciocchetta.
This sudden critical situation forced MBF to work very closely with both Ferrari-Carano, as well as the Department of Oenology at the University of Verona.“At that time, there were few studies done on how the shape of the bottle influences filling level. The specific solution we found for Ferrari-Carano, that solution is still in use today, was adjust some parameters of the filler, made some modifications to the machine and to its operation, so as to properly manage the preparation of wine before arriving in the filler. For each combination wine–bottle–cap MBF developed a specific recipe, managed and optimized through the machine’s software”, says Ciocchetta.
The second line: Superbloc® – Traceability, efficiency and flexibility
Since the purchase of their first bottling line, Ferrari-Carano’s success led them to continued growth and in 2013, the winery decided that it was time to purchase once again from MBF a new bottling line capable of approximately 170 bottles per minute, while also being quiet, simple to use, with compact design. The goal was to increase the bottling capacity by 40%. The Superbloc® meets all the above requirements: it is quiet and compact, offers high efficiency and total flexibility by integrating the rinser, filler, corker, capper, capsuler, and labeler into one machine. There is complete traceability with each and every bottle throughout each processing stage, ensuring constant control and the highest quality of the final bottled product. All components of the Superbloc® are driven by brushless motors and electronically synchronized, a feature that reduces energy consumption, maintenance costs, noise, and at the same time, greatly increases the accuracy of the machine. The main functions are combined into a single control panel, while specific features are directly accessible from local control panels available on each machine. Security guards ensure visibility and an easy access to every part of the machine. The compact design reduces the space needed as well as the number of operators on the entire line.
“We chose to rely on MBF again, because we’ve known the company for so many years and already with the first machine, which today is still performing well, we had found the right solution for our needs.”
“I am tremendously pleased with the purchase of our new MBF Superbloc®. The installation went great and the MBF technicians from Italy were instrumental in training my staff to get our bottling line into production. We have increased our production efficiency while maintaining our high quality control standards for our wines. I would highly recommend the MBF Superbloc® to future customers”, – declares Sarah Quider, winemaker at Ferrari-Carano Vineyards and Winery.
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