Understanding your canning system cost is crucial to buying the right equipment for your business and profitability goals. When you commit to the cost of a canning system, you are committing to more than just the machine’s sticker price. Beyond consumables like cans, labels or CO2, the quality and capabilities of your canning line itself can impact your total cost of ownership.
Considerations like equipment uptime, serviceability, labor, maintenance and more can impact your efficiency or product quality – and ultimately, your bottom line.
Canning System Costs You Need to Consider
How (Im)Proper Installation can Impact Your Wallet
Canning systems have moving parts and pieces with sophisticated operating systems. As with any advanced machinery, proper installation is key to setting yourself up for success. In particular, canning lines should be installed by the manufacturer or a trained, manufacturer-certified agent to ensure that you, your team and your machine begin on the right foot for long-term success. Improper installations waste time and product, ultimately costing you more money.
Your canning line manufacturer should discuss installation costs and objectives with you before you purchase your system. Make sure you understand these questions:
- Is installation included in the purchase price?
- Who installs the canning system?
- What does installation entail?
Then, prior to your machine’s arrival, your canning system manufacturer should communicate with you to help you feel prepared for installation.
A Foundation for Low Future Canning System Costs
The right training can give you the best foundation to keep your canning line running smoothly into the future. Proper training helps you avoid wasted product, leaky seams, broken parts or major downtime. A well-trained operator has a huge impact on the value you get from your system. Make sure your canning line manufacturer offers training for current and future operators you may hire. Turnover can be stressful, but access to retraining on an as-needed basis following staff turnover can help keep you from missing a beat.
EASE OF USE
Saving Time to Save Money
When you have a busy agenda, adding equipment complexity into the mix can drag you down. Your canning system should be intuitive to operate. You don’t want to spend valuable time figuring out how to use it or how to fix it. You should not need to be the world’s foremost packaging expert – a user-friendly machine will do the heavy lifting, streamlining your packaging schedule and giving you back time for other priorities.
Furthermore, your canning line should also come with the training needed to successfully operate the system, and thorough manuals and support services for the operator if they have questions.
Avoiding Unexpected Integration Costs Down the (Canning) Line
Will your canning line work with other packaging accessories? Could you integrate it with a depalletizer, date coder, liquid nitrogen doser, handle applicator or labeler now or in the future? It would be a waste to buy a system that doesn’t work with your existing equipment, or that can’t be easily and cost-effectively integrated with common packaging accessories on the market.
A good canning system manufacturer will help you account for compatibility during the purchasing process. In addition, canning lines that offer options to best fit into or move around your facility space can save you from unexpected surprises.
The More Robust the Canning System, the Lower the Canning System Cost
A canning line needs to stand up to constant use over the long term and keep up with your demand. How well built is the machine? Is it made for the rigors of your production environment and continued operation?
You’ve heard the phrase “Buy it ‘nice’ or buy it twice:” the lesson that cutting corners when purchasing an item in attempts to save a little money up front can often cost you much than you anticipated. A canning system is a significant investment in your business, and a key component in your final product quality and reputation. You do not want to replace a canning line within a year or two because the machine quality could not stand the test of time.
Doing More on a Single Canning System
When needed, does the canning line have the ability to handle multiple can or end sizes? Can you fill products with different product conditions? If you decide to switch things up in the future, you want to know your line can adjust to your needs.
A non-adaptable canning system is like a single-use kitchen gadget: when space and budget are tight, you are better off choosing the equipment that makes the most out of your money.
Planning for Growth to Shrink Future Canning System Costs
Your business grows and changes over time. What looks like small production today could rapidly turn into major demand tomorrow.
Rather than deciding between buying new systems as you grow or falling behind your production demands, make sure you invest in a canning line with upgradeability when you need to expand. Eventually, you will want options to upgrade your existing system, add extra automation or trade in your canning line so you can keep pace.
Staff Costs to Consider in Choosing Your Canning Line
How many people does it take to run the system? Labor costs can skyrocket if your machine takes a village to run. A well-designed canning line can keep staffing needs low and free up hands to tackle other projects. The staff operating the line each canning run will also value a machine designed with user ergonomics in mind (because packaging days shouldn’t suck).
Minimizing those Ongoing System Costs
The only certainties in life are death and taxes – and machine maintenance. Every machine – canning line or otherwise – requires preventative maintenance, replacement of wear parts and routine care. However, some canning machines may require more (or less) maintenance than others. Difficult-to-fix systems that need constant attention will cost you more in the long run.
Before buying your canning line, ensure you can easily get new parts from the canning line manufacturer. In addition, budgeting to keep common machine wear parts on hand can also save you from unexpected shipping costs or interruptions to your productivity.
Furthermore, trained service experts who are available to help you with maintenance tasks or troubleshooting can quickly keep you moving. A strong localized support network means you won’t have to worry about unforeseen issues or delays causing you downtime.
As every can filled is more cash in the bank, you don’t want to waste that money on a canning line with high maintenance costs.
Confidence in Quality, Confidence for Your Wallet
By providing a warranty on your canning system, a manufacturer guarantees they will repair or replace defective machine parts covered under warranty at no cost to you. If a warrantied part on your canning machine fails during the warranty period, you do not have to worry about an unexpected impact to your budget. The longer the warranty period, the less money you will need to spend on potential repairs.
Moreover, the manufacturer’s warranty also signals their assurance of the quality of the equipment. A manufacturer willing to offer an extended 1-year warranty period vs. a limited 6-month warranty period, for instance, has confidence that the long-term failure rate of machine parts is low – giving you high confidence in the life of the equipment, and your wallet.
The Power to Keep Canning System Costs Low
One of the biggest hidden costs of equipment can come from a lack of knowledge: whether in how to operate the equipment, how to optimize the system for certain products or how to troubleshoot issues.
Having the knowledge and support resources to get the most from your canning line goes a long way in minimizing your operating costs. In particular, you should look for reliable support from an established customer service team ready to answer questions, send you parts or come help out when you run into challenges. Good equipment backed by knowledge experts can help you understand how to keep dissolved oxygen low, maintain consistent fills and keep your flavor intact during packaging.
QUALITY OF YOUR FINAL PRODUCT
The Ultimate Hidden Canning System Cost
Ultimately, the quality of your canned product is a key driver of your reputation and revenue, supporting good word of mouth and repeat business. Machine quality has a direct impact on your final cans. Without a doubt, you can lose customers and money if your end product is underfilled, oxidized or flat. You want your product to taste like you intend when your customer cracks open a can.
A canning line that offers flavor-protecting technologies like dissolved oxygen prevention technologies, fast cycle times and repeatable seaming will save you significant costs (and PR headaches) in the long run.
Do Your Due Diligence!
Knowing about the hidden canning system costs BEFORE you invest is critical to avoid unnecessary expenses and maximize your canning profits. You can lower your overall cost of canning line ownership and speed up your return on investment by doing the due diligence up front.
Want to dive deeper into the hidden costs of canning? Hear more from two breweries with years of canning experience.