Taffy Production Line


The Problem

Modern production lines have to be designed to be as fast as possible with almost no error. When producing millions of products a day how does a company keep track of it all? The project describes how salt water taffy is made. The process starts with mixing raw materials, which are then baked in ovens and subsequently cooled. The taffy ingredients are pulled, folded and twisted on special pulling machines. Finally, the mixture is put into an extruding and cutting machine which produces pieces of wrapped taffy. In this project students become design engineers. They will need to decide how many of each machine the company needs, how long it will take to make taffy, and how much raw material is needed each day.

Background Information

The production of taffy needs to be done as efficiently as possible while adhering to the set of specifications below.

The taffy is produced by the following process:

  • Three different ingredients, X, Y and Z, are first combined in a large container in a ratio by weight of 10:3:1.
  • Four separate types of machines are required: Mixers, Cooling Trays, Pullers, and Extruders.
  • The 20-kilogram batches of the raw materials are mixed and heated for a period of 4 hours.
  • This 20-kilogram syrup is cooled for a period of 8 hours.
  • The Puller/Stretcher takes 30 kilogram batches and kneads them for 4 hours.
  • The Extruder (which also cuts and wraps) takes 8 hours to process 30 kg of taffy.

Materials Included

  • Problems regarding the number of machines and amounts of ingredients to efficiently produce taffy
  • Three extensions to increase the length and/or difficulty level of the project



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