Sucrogen BioEthanol, a company based at Sarina in Central QLD, had a small problem
that was causing a big pain.
The company produces 66 million litres of ethanol a year at its distillery that is formed
with a very special breed of microscopic yeast.
Sugars from local mills are converted into ethanol under controlled conditions.
If the process is not tightly controlled it is possible for contamination from outside material to occur.
One of the common contaminants is wild yeast. If detected, it means the propagation
process is not completed under sterile conditions and contaminants may infect the cycle.
To help solve the problem, Sucrogen contacted CTPM Australasia.
CTMP was able to get to the root cause of the problem and help eliminate any losses.
A Problem Solving Team was formed to determine the possible causes of the wild yeast infection.
The team developed a strategy aimed at reducing or eliminating the infections.
They reviewed the entire process and examined company information.
A detailed Cause and Effect Diagram was then developed from which two of the most
probable causes of contamination could be identified.
A detailed Root Cause Analysis was then applied to both possible causes using the
Why-Why Diagram, which brought about recommendations for trail solutions to be put
Since the first trials were conducted in early July this year no wild yeast has been detected in the last three fermentor cycles.
The team found a number of opportunities throughout the problem solving process and
have identified future actions, which they are now implementing.
CTPM offers a number of opportunities to learn and expand your understanding of the
problem solving process.
To learn more or to attend a one-day Lean Support Workshop visit: www.ctpm.org.au
Ph: 02 4226 6184