Babtec for the Sweet Dispenser that Became a World-Wide Cult Phenomenon

Austria-based PEZ International GmbH makes production processes more secure by deploying CAQ software by Babtec.

Who doesn’t know those unique sweet dispensers with the heads of cartoon characters, mechanical marvels designed to be thumbed into action just like a cigarette lighter? For some 60 years now they have not only become beloved by young and old, but also collector’s items sought after by a substantial cult following. A rare PEZ dispenser can change hands for five-digit sums, and in the U.S. there is even a museum dedicated to the little thingamajigs.

They were invented and are still manufactured by the PEZ International GmbH, a long-established family business in the Austrian town of Traun, which in 1927 started out by making compressed peppermint sweets. Today PEZ employs more than 700 people and produces about 65 million dispensers and 4.2 billion sweets yearly.
In order to make their quality assurance future-proof, PEZ has now decided to implement CAQ software by Babtec. “We would like to automate our QA documentation, which up to now has been performed manually, and thus optimize traceability”, says Mario Woldrich, engineer and Head of Quality Assurance at PEZ. “We expect to see a higher transparency in processes, a shortening of process cycles and overall better reporting in quality assurance.”

Babtec.Q presented itself as an option because it is fully compatible with the Infor ERP system used by PEZ for materials management. “This enables the systems to directly exchange data”, explains Woldrich. “Furthermore, the Babtec experts have convinced us during multiple presentations of the software’s viability.”

Right now, the software modules for incoming/outgoing goods inspection and supplier management, in-production testing, audit management and a paperless document management are being implemented and tested at the PEZ production facility in Hungary. Head of Quality Assurance Woldrich is confident: “If this installation is successful, we will expand the system to all our European production sites.”