PennTAP does a lot for small businesses in rural areas. They made it very easy for us to get the help we need to compete with larger companies.
CTC Packaging is a pallet and crate manufacturing business located in Sandy Lake, Pennsylvania, employing nearly 50 team members. Until recently, they were operating two energy intensive sawlines to produce the cuts of wood needed to manufacture pallets. Additionally, neither of the sawlines was optimized for efficient flow of operation.
The PennTAP Connection
CTC Packaging learned about PennTAP’s services through the Northwest Industrial Resource Center, (NWIRC), a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to serving small and medium-sized manufacturers in the Erie region. A PennTAP technical advisor, along with six senior engineering students, worked closely with CTC Packaging Maintenance Director Chris Groger to assess and improve sawline operations. While the team was on-site, they also performed a lighting assessment.
PennTAP completed a United States Department of Agriculture Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) grant application to help CTC Packaging purchase a more modern, energy-efficient sawline. The application required the calculation of energy savings based on the change in electrical consumption from the existing double sawlines to the proposed single sawline. The energy audit required PennTAP to determine the annual electrical usage based on the amount of lumber cut per year. PennTAP additionally contracted NWIRC to review the layout of the facility as the new sawline was being installed. NWIRC worked to develop a new workflow for the facility to improve overall manufacturing-related processes by reducing the distance, time, and costs associated with moving material throughout the facility.
CTC Packaging used the funds from the $108,000 REAP grant that PennTAP had helped them to acquire to cover a portion of the purchase price of a new sawline. Its installation will save $10,000 in energy costs per year, equivalent to 276,000 kWh annually. The costs avoided were $14,976. By consolidating to a single, more efficient line, CTC Packaging added three jobs and avoided eliminating another. By updating their lighting, CTC Packaging will be able to realize an annual savings of $15,000 for the one-time investment of $16,000.
About the Company
5264 Lake Street
Sandy Lake, PA 16145