The Fuji Plant Restructuring Project, launched in 2018, has entered a new phase in 2021.
By incorporating Polyplastics’ production technology, cultivated over 50 years, with new “Production Innovations by the Daicel Way,” we are achieving more advanced production and realizing revolutionary energy-savings plant-wide.
Incorporating new technology for more advanced production
Polyplastics launched the Fuji Plant Restructuring Project in 2018 in order to find and realize our future vision for our key plant, the Fuji Plant, and this project has been conducted in four phases focusing on upgrading plant production.
Phase III, which began in 2021, revolves around bringing together collective wisdom with further technological innovation, and it primarily involves initiatives aimed at stabilizing production, enhancing quality and streamlining operations. Following the acquisition of Polyplastics by Daicel Corporation as a wholly-owned subsidiary in October 2020, “Production Innovations by the Daicel Way” was incorporated in this project as a part of our synergy with Daicel. This has opened up all new perspectives and challenges that have allowed us to make great progress towards more advanced production.
A unique, person-focused approach
“Production Innovations by the Daicel Way” is an approach which was born at Daicel’s Aboshi Plant in the mid-1990s, and it is focused on achieving significant improvement in productivity and on strengthening manufacturing foundations. It is a distinctively “person-focused” approach which views people as the universal starting point when visualizing potential problems at the production site and when developing solutions. Based on this concept, the approach is comprised of four stages: visualization of production challenges, stabilization of production, standardization of operations, and systematization. It has primarily attracted the attention of the manufacturing industry, and the numerous companies which have incorporated it have been able to achieve production innovation. At Daicel’s Aboshi Plant, as well, the innovation achieved has improved its productivity almost three-fold and achieved manpower savings of roughly 60%.
Improving quality via “Visualization”
The key to this production innovation is thorough, person-focused “visualization.” For example, at Polyplastics we have approached only apparent problems when troubles occur, but to solve the problems fundamentally we have had to take a deeper approach because these problems might come from other potential problems, like the operator load. Going forward, we focus on plant-wide visualization, which includes those potential problems that have not been fully verified.
Through this visualization, we eliminate waste and loss, and both new and experienced employees are able to handle the same level of operations; as a result, the precision of each process is improved, which contribute to production stabilization and quality enhancement. This is anticipated to exceed the initial expectations in the Fuji Plant Restructuring Project.
Visualization of potential problems by focusing on persons
In this way, we will solve the issues that have become apparent by focusing on operators with both soft infrastructure such as rules and systems creation and hard infrastracture such as equipment expansion.
Reducing environmental impact as well
Also, eliminating waste and loss at the production site helps to maximize productivity, which makes it possible to reduce raw material and energy usage even further. This project also contributes to cost and energy balance for more optimized operations, as well as significant progress towards carbon neutrality-focused energy savings.
Hidetoshi Kozono (pictured at right)
Production Div. Production Center Fuji Plant
Dept. Manager of Production Dept.
Raita Nishikawa (pictured at left)
Expanding the successes of the Fuji Plant to plants overseas
The final goal of this project is to introduce the prodcution technology resulting from the efforts to achieve more advanced production at the Fuji Plant to our overseas group plants.
Establishing the Fuji Plant as a hub of technological innovation information, we aim to increase productivity and reduce environmental impact for the group as a whole.