Conveyor for Jacob’s Club Biscuits factory

by Carolynn Sarver

A ‘Spiroflow’ Flexible Conveyor has been installed at Jacob’s Bakeries Ltd, factory in Aintree, Liverpool, UK. It feeds bags of brown flour directly into the mixer used to manufacture the base of Jacob’s famous ‘Club’ biscuits, ‘Gold’ biscuits and some of the biscuits for their packs of ‘Biscuits for Cheese’. This conveyor, installed in June 2009, is sited alongside the ‘Spiroflow’ Bulk Bag Discharger that feeds Oat Flour via an integral 5” diameter Flexible Screw Conveyor into a storage silo above the same mixer.

According to the Site Projects Manager, David Rome, “The new Flexible Screw Conveyor ran first time and has performed well ever since. In fact, the ‘Spiroflow’ Bulk Bag Discharger has been in operation for 14 years – trouble-free!”

The new ‘Spiroflow’ Flexible Conveyor is 35 ft long, lifting the flour up some 15 ft at an angle of approximately 45 degrees. It was linked to an existing sack tip station with integral check sifter. The inlet to the conveyor is complete with an agitator to prevent any bridging of the coarse flour and Spiroflow supplied a check magnet too as part of their scope of supply. The conveyor and its controls are designed to operate in a European ATEX Zone 22 dust hazard area.

The mixer is in operation 14 hours a day, 5 days a week and mixes a new batch of biscuit base every 30 minutes. So the ‘Spiroflow’ equipment that keeps it fed has to be reliable! Asked why he chose a ‘Spiroflow’ Flexible Conveyor for this new application, David Rome responded, “I have no particular loyalty to any manufacturer, I knew of Spiroflow’s sound reputation and included them among the companies I contacted. They proposed the more practical solution, produced a good layout drawing and offered the best price too. They then delivered exactly what they said they would and on time”.

W & R Jacob’s Ltd was founded by brothers William and Robert in 1851. The first ‘Cream Cracker’ was produced in 1885. The first ‘Club’ Biscuit was launched in 1919. In 2004 Jacob’s was acquired by United Biscuits. The savoury biscuit and snacks range acquired by UB also includes well known favourites such as Club, Iced Gems, Fig Rolls, Cheddars and Twiglets. The full range, combined with UB’s existing savoury biscuits business such as Carr’s, makes UB the UK’s no 1 manufacturer of savoury biscuits. Their Jacob’s site at Aintree, where they employ over 800 people, covers some 50 acres and has an annual output of 50,000 tons of biscuits.