I feel like i'm going crazy in a new work environment, and it's really making me feel defeated in my position for the first time in my career. I've been dealing with this for over two months now, and I'm at my wit's end. Perhaps I'm being the so-called crazed "quality nazi" (not a bad thing, eh?) and need to be reined in. So, I've decided to turn to you guys for help.
We're a grinding process. That's all we do. Receive in trim. Grind. Ship. We've been struggling with Foreign material opportunities for a while now. Soft plastic from raw material, soft plastic from rework, hard plastic from who knows where, hard plastic from PPE, but not much metal (of course, because we have detection systems in place for metal, so why would the stars align for me on that?).
Here's the thing - We do have a defect eliminator (Weiler) that pulls out most dense foreign bodies. With my history with this brand, I do not feel confident these pieces of equipment remove 100% of denser foreign objects, depending on size, and I also do not feel confident in its ability to remove all soft plastic contamination. That is not to say I don't think they are very effective, I absolutely do, I just don't put 100% of my faith in them. I prefer to look at product coming out of the defect eliminator as an indicator of potential contamination.
Having said that, I've been really confused lately. Any time plastic is observed in the defect eliminator, there is literally a shrug of the shoulders from operations and "The equipment is doing what it's supposed to." There is no breaking down of the equipment, no observing product from the blender, the finishing grinders, or on belts, no real investigation expected to determine the source.
When I am miraculously notified that plastic is exiting the defect eliminator, I ask them to stop the process until we can complete an investigation into the source, determine the potential for finished product or WIP contamination, and inspect equipment prior to the step where the foreign object was identified. I kind of feel like this is normal stuff.
Everyone here disagrees. Not only do they disagree, they just keep running! I'm throwing away more product from "We just didn't think we'd find anymore and kept running" than I am from what I actually think is the most affected product, and absolutely more than we would have if we would have STOPPED, come together, and come to an agreement as a team. I'm working on a foreign material procedure, updated from the one my predecessor created, and, I'll be honest, I'm being kind of a hard you-know-what in it, because I know they are going to argue with how strict it is and this will give me a little wiggle room, kind of like when buying a car. I'm over-selling to win negotiations.
For those with experience with defect eliminators/bone eliminators/beehive grinders, am I going overboard?