H&C Automated Solutions welcomes Milmeq capabilities

A Milmeq freezing tunnel
A Milmeq freezing tunnel.

H&C Automated Solutions continues to expand its product and service offering for food processors, with its recent acquisition adding to its long list of automated product handling systems.

The Mercer Group-owned company recently acquired the chilling and freezing business of New Zealand engineering company Milmeq. Milmeq is recognised as a global leader in automated carton chilling and freezing systems. Its automatic chilling and freezing tunnels and plate-freezers for the meat and dairy industries were the first of their kind when developed and continue to be recognised as setting the industry standard.

H&C is renowned for its capability to design and deliver world leading automated solutions to the cheese, horticulture and red meat sectors globally. H&C has broad materials handling capability and specialised reverse packaging systems in cheese and, more recently, red meat that include de-palletising, de-boxing and de-bagging. The recent additions of BetaVac vacuum packing and Aico carton erecting equipment have further expanded its product range.

Mercer Group chief executive officer, Richard Rookes said the acquisition of Milmeq was a huge win for customers.

“Adding chilling and freezing systems to our capabilities means we now really can offer complete solutions to the back end of cheese and meat processing operations. That means our customers only have to engage one entity for a complete, integrated solution.”

H&C Automation general manager Mike Lee
Newly-appointed H&C general manager Mike Lee

As part of the acquisition, H&C has expanded its presence with a further New Zealand office in Auckland and an Australian office in Brisbane, in addition to its existing offices in Hastings, New Zealand and Green Bay, Wisconsin in the US.

This growth has seen the appointment of Mike Lee as general manager for H&C, tasked with leading the integration of the two companies and driving expansion of H&C’s client base. Lee’s previous experience includes two years as international sales and marketing manager for Milmeq and 17 years working for global dairy companies Fonterra and Synlait.

The challenge of bringing two well-respected brands together and creating more solutions for customers was something to look forward to, he says.

“Making businesses more efficient is extremely rewarding – our systems are helping them to create better quality products for their customers while also achieving the benefits of improved safety and reduced operating costs. I’m confident the new look H&C will be equipping our clients with world-leading automated solutions.”

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