Gallagher has brought to NZ the manufacture of its RING TOP Post range with the commissioning of two new robots at the company’s Hamilton headquarters.
Two brand new hi-tech vertical moulding machines are now manufacturing Gallagher’s full range of RING TOP Posts and Offsets, bringing their production from China to NZ.
Popular with dairy and cattle farmers, RING TOP Posts are part of Gallagher’s portable electric fencing range. Gallagher Research and Development Project Manager, Daniel Exton says more than 85 per cent of the company’s total product offering is NZ-made
“Our preference is always to manufacture in NZ if possible. The manufacturing process in China was manual and labour-intensive, so plans to bring the RING TOP manufacture home have been in the pipeline for some time.”
He says the move is also part of Gallagher Group’s bigger sustainability drive.
“We’re now manufacturing these products right on the back door step of the very farmers who use them. With NZ and Australia being key markets, we have greatly reduced transport distances and improved our supply chain response time.”
Affectionately named Bert and Ernie, the new robots provide Gallagher with more efficient and flexible manufacturing. The technology is allowing the company to develop new versions of the posts and offsets and removing the challenges that come with intercountry communication.
The machines also have the capacity to produce other plastic over-molded products, which means Gallagher can also make improvements to products already on the market.
Daniel says the manufacturing process in China saw posts moulded one-by-one, while Bert and Ernie can shape four posts simultaneously. The robotic technology carries the posts to the first machine where the plastic foot is created, and then to a second machine which moulds the head.
“Direct manufacturing control was also important for us given the popularity of the patented RING TOP design among farmers both in NZ and globally,” says Daniel.
“The demand for the product range has doubled since the release of the original RING TOP Post 7 years ago, so there is huge potential for further growth.”
RING TOP Posts appeal to farmers because they don’t get tangled like conventional pigtail standards and their super tough glass reinforced head will not wear through and short. Now they are NZ-made, they tick all the boxes.
Gallagher launched a ‘NZ-Made’ campaign last year, highlighting its commitment to manufacturing its products in NZ. Daniel says Bert and Ernie demonstrate this commitment in action.
“As part of our campaign, we worked with a number of inspiring farmers who are using our products on farm, including our RING TOP post range. They appreciate the value quality NZ made products can add to their business.
“Bringing production of this range back to NZ strengthens our commitment to manufacturing the best products for farmers right here in NZ.
“After all, they want to buy the best homegrown products they know will get the job done.”
While the moulding machines were Made by Engel off-shore, the automation system to service them was designed and commissioned by Hamilton-based RML Engineering.