Located in the heart of Staffordshire, Wade Lane Farm appears to be like most others. A landscape blanketed with golden barley and rapeseed crop, where animals graze and vegetables are harvested.
This is 700 acres of mixed agricultural land that stretches as far as the eye can see. But farmer Anthony Froggatt isn’t like most other farmers. Wade Lane Farm is also home to his cold pressed rapeseed oil business, ‘Just Oil’.
The Froggatt family have lived and worked on the farm for generations, and decided to build on the success of ‘Just Oil’ by starting production of their ‘Just Crisps’ range in 2011. Using their own potato crop that is cooked in their own award winning rapeseed oil, the Froggatt’s have established themselves amongst the other premium brands of crisps on the high street.
However, it hasn’t been easy. Forggart explains: “Our crisps are quite expensive to produce and there are very small margins so we are always on the lookout for value and quality. As we began to make our crisps, we realised very quickly that we needed a more efficient way to process our potatoes.
“We wanted to keep tight control and to make sure we weren’t wasting the harvest. So we sat down and decided that introducing a weighing system into our processing line would allow us to do this. But we didn’t know how to do this, so we got in touch with Applied Weighing for help.”
“They came to site and were great. We went through the application and spoke about what we were hoping to achieve and they were able to explain what was needed. We now have load cells under our potato belt, which look at the weight of the potatoes and gives us a nice and clear readout.”
He adds: “We quickly started to supply a diverse selection of local and national independent retailers including delis, farm shops, convenience stores, coffee shops, pubs and the food service industry.
“It has been a lot of hard work but we have confidence in our products and what we do here. The system that Applied Weighing supplied us has made me more confident.”
Applied Weighing’s solution was to supply their Compact loading assemblies; high accuracy stainless steel load cells with anti-vibration rubber mounts for mounting under the potato belt.
The load cells were linked to an intelligent junction box that analysed the performance of each load cell, and linked up with a Target 260S digital weight indicator. All load cells and instrumentation were suitably rated for wash down, and designed and manufactured in the UK for full traceability and fast delivery.