Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Olive Oil

If you shop for olive oil at your local grocery store, one brand that you are likely to see is Ybarra, direct from Sevilla, Spain. The world leader in olive production is Spain and 75% of Spain's olive production comes from the region of Andalusia with Sevilla is its capital. Last week, our students were invited to visit the Ybarra food processing facility on the outskirts of Sevilla.

The family owned company was founded in 1842 by the first Count of Ybarra, José María de Ybarra y Gutierrez de Caviedes. International success came quickly as the company's olive oil was granted the quality award at the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition in 1876. In addition to its own line of products, Ybarra also provides mixing, bottling and distribution services for other companies such as Heinz Corporation. We were amused to see Heinze Bar-BQ sauce bottled for distribution in Germany.

The tanks below are used for mixing the various products. Every part of the processing is fully automated.

The packaging lines really appeal to our engineering "geeks." Without a doubt, the star attraction for the trip is the "box flipper." The mechanism works with a clever spring mounted arm - no motors. Its great to be an engineer!

Click on the image for the video.

From Ybarra

The "box stacker" was a close second in popularity.

From Ybarra

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