KUKA Robotics asked us to produce a case study video about the integration of their robot into the Widmer Brothers Brewing Company in Portland, OR.
At first, we thought, “strange, a brewery isn’t exactly the first place you’d expect to find a robot.” As it turns out, it’s not as crazy as it sounds. In fact, robots have become effective in a number of small and unique businesses.
Midwest Engineering was charged with heading the custom integration of the KUKA robot. Not only could the robot safely fulfill Widmer Brothers’ needs, it was agile and customizable enough to work in the cramped, low-ceiling space of the bottling room.
<blockquote>You build your perfect brewhouse and then, all of a sudden, you can’t make enough beer so you increase your fermentation capacity. Then you have to increase your celler capacity. Well, now you can brew it, you can cellar it, but you can’t package it fast enough or efficient enough. -Ben Dobler, Brewing Innovation Master</blockquote>
Now case study videos are usually straightforward, and often rather boring. We wanted to approach this one differently and set out to create a storyline that could make the robot, and the brewery, more engaging. Integrating a robot doesn’t take away from the handcrafted feel of the microbrewery, to the contrary, it allows employees to focus more on their passion: crafting amazing beers.
After 4,000 miles of travel and a few beers, we crafted a piece that’s uniquely Widmer, with a hint of innovation only KUKA could provide.