Kellogg’s site achieves marked improvements in set-up time, production and plant capacity


Executive Summary
K-Lean is Kelloggs global initiative to implement and systemise World Class Operations (WCO), which is powered by TRACC. At their Mexican sites, they’ve achieved efficiencies in various metrics including 40% reduction in Set-up Time, 50% improvement in boxes produced, and a 3% in plant capacity per annum. Read about how they achieved these and more.


Kellogg’s made a decision to implement K-Lean, the name for the global journey to implement World Class Operations (WCO), at all its plants in Latin America. Before embarking on the WCO journey, Kellogg’s defined several challenges: world economic changes; supporting consumers and clients; how the supply chain could be a facilitator and not an obstacle; developing people to manage the business in the future; and creating future results today.Kellogg's-site-improves-set-up-time-results

A selection process saw Kellogg’s elect the TRACC team to support K-Lean implementation at its Mexican plants in Queretaro, Linares, Toluca and Mexicali. The Linares, Toluca and Mexicali plants were targeted to receive training in Leading and Managing Change, Teamwork, Focused Improvement and 5S. During the assessment phase, the Queretaro plant was identified as ideal to convert plant capacity improvements quickly into product sales and cash flow.

Productivity has improved and using teamwork, management noted a number of operational changes.

A 42-week plan was designed using additional TRACC resources to expedite achieving incremental capacity, reducing downtime and waste.

The process and packaging lines were selected as pilot sites at all the plants. After a loss and waste analysis (LWA), historical production volume data was evaluated to determine the main breakdown causes. From this LWA, improvement projects were identified for execution during the next six months. A critical issue was using new teams to implement K-Lean and achieving improvement at the same time. Opportunities were identified for non-planned shutdown, cleaning, fumigation and adjustments. Also, other opportunities that surfaced during project execution were added to the list. Each product requires a specific production equipment combination, especially at the Corn Combo line.

The fumigation procedure was unique to the overall plant and needed almost one shut-down day per month. Equipment cleaning procedures weren’t standardised — each operator followed their own procedure, while others didn’t know any procedure or time required to complete adjustments.

Another important matter was energy consumption (water and steam), which contributed to non-planned interruptions of steam supply and waste generation in the production process. Instability made it difficult to schedule set-up preparation and changeovers. These unpredictable events led to frustration in certain production and utility processes. Fortunately, a training programme was developed for the three task forces and internal trainers were trained to support the implementation process. Thus the foundation for quick wins was created. Multidisciplinary Team Meetings (MDTM) and Small Business Team Meetings (SBTM) were implemented to track and focus on problems during shifts, and they reduced response time by more than 50%.Corn ears on white background

Maintenance Efficiency Analysis (MEA) showed that non-planned shutdowns caused substantial problems at the packaging lines. This guided the maintenance area to focus on problems caused by spares and resources unavailability and maintenance inefficiency. Preventative maintenance proved to use less time and increase the availability of certain equipment.

A valuable tool during implementation was Leader Standard Work (LSW) for line supervisors in their daily or routine work, and process mapping during problem-solving analysis sessions. LSW allowed remarkable improvement opportunities in various production process areas.

Set-up Time Reduction (STR) was used in the fumigation process, achieving a drop of 40%; allergenic cleaning time at line 14A in Packaging improved; and the number of boxes produced increased by 50%. Initially STR was also applied to the steamers’ maintenance on the Corn Combo line and a potential reduction of up to 40% in the first stage, and up to 64% in the second stage, was shown. As a result of these improvements, plant capacity was increased by 3% on a per annum basis. Although additional capacity improvements were identified, these will require careful study and the completion of Kaizen Blitz projects before they’re implemented.

Intangible benefits from the TRACC implementation include the improvement of worker-supervisor-manager relationships, and expansion of the internal capability of the Kellogg’s Mexican plants to conduct training using staff resources. In supporting K-Lean, the TRACC implementation achieved a major expansion in training hours per worker and expansion of the number of trainers.

Productivity has improved and using teamwork, management noted a number of operational changes: more eyes looking for and eliminating waste, reduced production cycle time, 4% p.a. capacity increase on packaging, reduced non-productive time (cleaning and fumigation), 40% time reduction for fumigating all plants, and 66% time reduction for cleaning dryers (Proctor).

The TRACC programme is being rolled out in India and Colombia for Kellogg’s.

Company Background
Headquartered in Battle Creek, Michigan, USA, is Kellogg’s, the world production leader for cereals, snacks and alternative food. The group has a presence in 180 countries, with eight plants in Latin America; four of which are in Mexico.

This resource has been prepared for general guidance on matters of interest only, and does not constitute professional advice. You should not act upon the information contained herein without obtaining specific professional advice. Competitive Capabilities International (CCI) does not accept or assume any liability, responsibility or duty of care for any consequences of you or anyone else acting, or refraining to act, in reliance on the information contained in this resource or for any decision based on it.

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