What could be sweeter than sprinkles, icings, gels and other confectionery products? Aside from the cakes, cupcakes, donuts and other treats on which these confections are placed, Signature Brands, LLC could argue dependable, worry-free operations. That’s why the company relies on Sullair compressors to keep their operations going, day in and day out. “We use air for everything,” said Signature Brands Maintenance Manager Tim Hudgens. “It’s a major problem if a compressor goes down. We’re scrambling.”
The Ocala, Florida-based company, founded in 1951, is America’s leading innovator of specialty and holiday decorating products and accessories. Their portfolio includes Betty Crocker and Cake Mate dessert decorating products, PAAS Easter egg colors, Pumpkin Masters pumpkin carving kits and Popcorn Expressions.
Signature Brands depends on the reliability and durability of Sullair products in both its popcorn and decorating plants. The decorating plant runs three shifts per day, five days a week, and requires air for all of its operations. Demand for Signature Brands’ products fluctuates, peaking in the holiday season, which often prompts seven day a week production from August to November in the decorating plant. The popcorn plant operates July to November of each year and produces both the popcorn and famous decorative tins.
In 2015, after nearly 80,000 hours of consistent performance, Signature Brands replaced the Sullair stationary unit in its decorating plant with twin 150 hp DA-13 oil free compressors with an SR series dryer, a configuration instrumental to the company’s practice. Because the air comes in contact with sugars and other edible products, using food-grade, oil free air is critical. “When transporting sugar, if there is any moisture it’s an immediate clog,” said Hudgens. A clog means downtime, making reliable air a critical component of the business.
Throughout the compressor’s 80,000 hours, Signature Brands experienced minimal issues. Although the machine was still functional and was replaced proactively, Hudgens and his team had no question as to which manufacturer they would choose for their next compressor. Why Sullair? Because of the proven reliability. “When you’re in the maintenance business, you go with reliability,” said Hudgens. “We could have changed when we bought the new machines, but we didn’t. If it’s not broken, stick with it.”
Just as Signature Brands depends on the durability of Sullair compressors, they also rely on the dedicated service of local distributor Ring Power. Ring Power and Sullair have been partners in the industry for more than 30 years and work together to ensure customers in the region, like Signature Brands, have quality compressed air solutions, timely maintenance and appropriate aftermarket support.
Ring Power performs all service work for Signature Brands and allows the company’s maintenance team to focus on other issues, a big plus for the company. “Sullair is our compressor of choice,” Hudgens said. “And Ring Power does a great job servicing the equipment and helping us with any issues we may have.”
With 18 locations throughout Florida and 22 technicians in the power systems division, Ring Power’s around-the-clock service for air compressors is close by for Signature Brands and other organizations requiring critical air. “It keeps the mechanics where they need to be—in the factory,” said Hudgens.
Sullair and Ring Power ensure that reliable air is a constant at Signature Brands, just as they have for decades. After all, upwards of 1,000 pounds an hour of popcorn depend on it, and that’s no hot air.